lack of satisfactory theory in international law


There is a gap in international law theory that explains when and why states comply with international law. International law should not be overlooked because it influences state conduct.

Treaties and Compliance

A treaty is a legally binding agreement between two or more nations. Treaties are agreements that bind states to specified behaviors. They have substantial legal consequences under both domestic and international law. In international law, compliance is a very contested subject. States are expected to follow the terms of the accords. States join treaties to protect their reputation and avoid consequences associated with noncompliance with their obligations (Epps 220). They are legally and morally obliged to comply with the accepted norms of a treaty. However, there are certain exceptions to the observation of treaties when there is revocation or withdrawal based on operational laws.

Right to Withdraw from a Treaty

A party has the right to withdraw from a treaty, and participating parties have to give their consent. It is not possible to withdraw from a treaty unless there is a provision for termination. Although the revocation may not be stated in a treaty, it may be implied. A treaty that does not have a provision for termination can allow a withdrawal in particular circumstance. The first instance is when a party has shown the intention of possible withdrawal. Secondly, the nature of a treaty may give implications of withdrawal or denunciation. The right to withdraw can be imposed by operational law such as some legal rule irrespective of the consent of other parties. A state can fail to observe a treaty when there is a high degree of inconsistency between the internal law of the state and the treaty (Epps 230).

Work Cited

Epps, Valerie. International Law (5th Ed.). Carolina Academic Press, 2013.

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