Laurence Boisson de ChazournesBoisson…

Laurence Boisson de Chazournes,  ‘Les relations entre organisations régionales et organisations universelles’, Recueil des Cours, Vol. 347 (2011) [The relationship between regional and universal organizations].


Laurence Boisson de Chazournes is a professor of international law at the University of Geneva. Her main field of interest has been in international environmental law, focusing on the linkages with other fields of international law, and pioneering that more attention is being paid to the status of water in international law. She also developed a strong interest in the field of international organizations and was invited to lecture on the subject at The Hague Academy in 2010.


The field of international security and peacekeeping consists of various sectors responding to different legal regimes and Laurence Boisson de Chazournes begins by making some preliminary distinctions in order examine the legal and institutional consequences of ad hoc approaches to the cooperation between the United Nations and regional organisations. Firstly, she examines the role regional organisations play in the peacekeeping field. Secondly, she examines the actions implying the use of armed force by the United Nations or regional organisations. For the purpose of this extract we focus on the first extract.

The peaceful settlement of disputes is enshrined in chapter 6 of the UN Charter. In the case of a dispute, it is envisaged that the Security Council invites the parties to peacefully settle their disputes and recommend the appropriate measures to be taken. Nevertheless the UN is not the only institution in the field which holds this competence. Due to their proximity to the conflict and their flexibility, regional organisations are often involved in the peaceful settlement of disputes. How is the division of tasks solved between the UN and the regional organisations? Different approaches to the division of tasks exist leaving a clear division of the latter open. Over the last few decades, the cooperation between the UN and regional organisations can be characterised through mutual reinforcement whereby considerations of pragmatism and efficiency are predominant in the relationship between these organisations.


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