Sophia University Professor Mr. Shinya Murase Elected to the International Law Commission

May 7, 2009

  1. Due to the resignation of Ambassador Chusei Yamada from the International Law Commission (ILC), a special election was held May 4 (Monday) at the European headquarters of the UN in Geneva. Mr. Shinya Murase, a Japanese citizen and professor at Sophia University, was elected.
  2. Professor Shinya Murase has worked in the Office of Legal Affairs Codification Division, as a judge in the Asian Development Bank Administrative Tribunal, as well as a lead author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report. He is currently a member of the Japanese Society of International Law's Executive Council as well as a Member of the Curatorium of the Hague Academy of International Law, one of the world's most influential academic facilities for international law.
  3. Japan places great importance on establishing "rule of law" in the international community to peacefully end international disputes and to bring about worldwide peace and prosperity. From this viewpoint, Japan believes that development of international law is essential. For Japan, Professor Murase being elected has great significance for continuing to actively plan and contribute to developing international laws through the ILC.

(Reference) International Law Commission/International Law Commission Elections

  1. The International Law Commission (ILC) was established in 1947 by a United Nations General Assembly Resolution. Since then, it has worked to draw up treaties such as the Conventions on Diplomatic and Consular Relations, the four Law of the Sea treaties (Convention on the Territorial Sea and the Contiguous Zone, Convention on the High Seas, Convention on the Continental Shelf, and Convention on Fishing and Conservation of Living Resources of the High Seas), Convention on the Law of Treaties, Statute of the International Criminal Court, and the UN Convention on State Immunity.
  2. Japanese members of the ILC have included Former Chief Justice Mr. Kisaburo Yokota (1957-61), Former UN Ambassador Mr. Senjin Tsuruoka (1961-81), Former Ambassador to Thailand Mr. Motoo Ogiso (1982-91), and Former Ambassador to India Mr. Chusei Yamada (1992-2009).
  3. The Commission consists of 34 members who serve 5-year terms, and elections for all members are held every 5 years. In this case, a special election was held because one of the members resigned during his term.