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3 Int'l L.F. D. Int'l 18 (2001)
Notes on the Relationship between International Law and National Law

handle is hein.journals/intlfddb3 and id is 28 raw text is: Notes on the Relationship between International Law and
National Law
1. - In all my contributions on the integration of public international law into the
domestic legal orders I have always argued that international rules- i.e. rules created
by custom, by treaties and by binding resolutions of international organisations -
should be treated on the same footing as unilateral municipal law. It is not a question
of adopting a monistic rather than a dualistic approach. This is a theoretical question
with no practical implications, which can be left in the hands of philosophers. It is
rather a question of a change in the mentality of people involved in legal affairs,
especially legislators, public administrators and judges. It is a question of persuading
this people to use all means and mechanisms provided by municipal law, and to
perfect them, in order to ensure compliance with international rules.
International law has dramatically progressed in the last fifty years as far as its
content is concerned. It has increasingly embodied values of human solidarity and
justice. Suffice it to recall the great customary principles which have grown up,
such as the principle on the prohibition of the use of force or the principle of the
protection of the human dignity. The same can be said of the treaty law, the
conventions on human rights being the most, but not the only, important example
in this field. On the contrary, international means and procedures for the application
and coercive enforcement of such a spectacular set of rules are still very poor and
almost non existent. And this is exactly the reason why, in my opinion, we have to
rely- I am tempted to say exclusively - on the means of implementation offered
by domestic legal orders. Only actions undertaken by states, within their legal
orders, can ensure compliance with, and avoid violations of, international law. The
awareness of the necessity of such actions by legislators, public administrators and
judges, is thus indispensable, and, for the same reason, the subject of the relationship
between international law and municipal law is to be considered as the key chapter
of every handbook on public international law.
2. - How must a legislator behave in order to prevent violations on the part of its
state ?
* Professor of Public International Law, University of Naples; Permanent visiting Professor
of Public International Law, University of Alexandria (Egypt), from 1976 to 1993; Former
judge of the European Court of Human Rights; Member of the European Commission of
Human Rights from 1993 to 1999; Member of the Institut de droit international; Member
of the Curatorium of the Hague Academy of International Law; Member of the Permanent
Court of Arbitration.

International Law FORUM du droit international 3: 18-24, 2001.
0c 2001 Kluwer I.aw International. Printed in the Netherlands.

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