FREE ELECTRONIC LIBRARY - Dissertations, online materials

Pages:   || 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 |


-- [ Page 1 ] --









Second Edition April 2000

Revised May 2004

Revised April 2012

Updated March 2014 CONTENTS 1 TREATIES AND MOUs Responsibility for concluding treaties What is a treaty?

What is an MoU?

How do you distinguish an MoU from a treaty?

Documents required by FCO Treaty Section


Treaty drafts Signature of treaties Checklist for signature ceremonies Ratification of treaties Reservations, interpretive declarations and objections Laying before Parliament and publication 3 EXPLANATORY MEMORANDA (EMs) Guidelines on EMs for treaties Example of an EM 4 MOUs Terminology Specimen paragraphs Form of words to be used for an exchange of notes Recording an MoU


Introduction Extract from the International Relations Concordat







The responsibility for concluding treaties involving the UK lies with the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs. The FCO is responsible for Foreign and Commonwealth policy aspects of all treaties, as well as for dealing with questions of form and procedure. It must also consider points of international law.

This remains the case even when the negotiation of the treaty is led by other government departments (OGDs) i.e. the department which will carry out the treaty's provisions. FCO Legal Advisers and FCO Treaty Section must be given the opportunity to comment on the drafts of all treaties under negotiation to ensure that they are drafted in accordance with correct international practice. The same applies to MoUs (see below).


The term treaty describes an international agreement concluded in writing between states which creates rights and obligations in international law. Treaties are known by a variety of names, for example agreement, convention, protocol, treaty etc. They may be in the form of a single instrument with numbered articles or in the form of an exchange of notes. There can also be treaties between a state and an international organisation.


An MoU records international "commitments", but in a form and with wording which expresses an intention that it is not to be binding as a matter of international law. An MoU is used where it is considered preferable to avoid the formalities of a treaty - for example, where there are detailed provisions which change frequently or the matters dealt with are essentially of a technical or administrative character; in matters of defence or technology where there is a need for such documents to be classified; or where a treaty requires subsidiary documents to fill out the details. Like a treaty, an MoU can have a variety of names and can also be either in the form of an exchange of notes or a single document. However, the formalities which surround treatymaking do not apply to it and it is not usually published. Confusingly some treaties are called memoranda of understanding.


The predetermined method of distinguishing an MoU from a treaty is by the terms in which they are written. The key difference between MoUs and treaties is whether or not there is an intention to create legally binding obligations. It is the international practice to show clearly by the form of the document and its terminology the intention either to create legally binding obligations, or not, i.e. either a treaty or an MoU. Thus, in order to ensure that MoUs are not worded in such a way as to amount to treaties care should be taken to avoid the use of "treaty language". Guidance on the terminology to be used (and to be avoided) as well as on the form is given on pages 15-18.

Although an MoU is not legally binding it should be no less carefully drafted than if it were a treaty, given that it is always the intention to perform all HMG's commitments, whether legally binding or not. As with treaties, all draft MoUs should be sent to the relevant FCO department for clearance by their legal adviser, and foreign language versions should be checked. Moreover, there should be the same level of inter-departmental consultation as for treaties (see page 3).


Original treaty documents should always be sent to Treaty Section, which arranges for their publication as command papers and laying before Parliament. It also arranges for their transfer to the National Archives for permanent preservation upon entry into force for the UK and for their registration with the United Nations in accordance with Article 102 of the UN Charter.

In addition, all notifications about treaties (i.e. notifications about the signature or ratification of treaties by the UK and by other states, about declarations, reservations and objections made by other states, and about the entry into force of treaties), which are received by OGDs directly from a depositary should be forwarded to FCO Treaty Section. States may act as a legal depositary for multilateral treaties and are responsible for ensuring the proper execution of all treaty actions relating to that treaty. The depositary‟s duties are international in character, and the depositary is under obligation to act impartially in the performance of those duties.

MoUs, as opposed to treaties, are entered on departmental files. However, a photocopy of the final (and preferably signed) text of an MoU should be sent to FCO Treaty Section.



OGDs should normally deal with the appropriate FCO geographical or functional department, who should seek advice from their departmental legal adviser and Treaty

Section on text and format of treaty drafts. Particular points to note are:

(a) It is for the department responsible for the subject of the treaty to prepare the initial draft and to maintain an up to date version as amendments are made during the course of negotiations. All drafts and subsequent amended versions should be dated.

Drafts which undergo significant amendment should be cleared again as necessary. It is helpful to have amendments highlighted in some way.

(b) Consistent wording and layout should be used, especially when making amendments and additions. Cross-references should always be checked.

(c) Any foreign language version must be submitted to the FCO Translation Branch, by the FCO lead department, for comparison and verification against the English text at the earliest opportunity. (A linguistic check is also necessary for an MoU.) (d) At all stages of preparation of a treaty, time should be allowed for indispensable standard checks, e.g. legal, linguistic etc.

(e) Clean versions of the final agreed draft, in English and foreign languages as appropriate, should be produced in good time by the lead department, since a minimum of three weeks is normally required for preparing signature copies of a treaty.

(f) It is essential that the Devolved Administrations are consulted about negotiations that touch on devolved areas (see page 19).

(g) The Channel Islands, the Isle of Man, and the overseas territories should be consulted at the earliest possible time when a treaty is being negotiated, or consideration is being given to the signature of a treaty already adopted, which could apply to them (see page 23-24).

The lead department should never make any commitments to the other party or parties about the preparation of documents or about dates for signature without first consulting all other departments concerned (and in particular Treaty Section).


Unless the treaty provides that it enters into force on signature, by signing a treaty a State shows that it is in agreement with the text, but it is not bound by it until the treaty has been ratified and has entered into force. The state is not obliged to ratify it.

The UK, however, does not sign a treaty unless it has a reasonably firm intention of ratifying.

In international law a head of state, head of government or foreign minister may sign a treaty in his or her own right. Anyone else needs to produce "Full Powers" from one of those three. Full Powers are the grant to another person of authority to sign a treaty on behalf of the State. In UK practice, the Queen does not sign treaties, but the Prime Minister sometimes does. Full Powers are normally signed by the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary except for certain EU treaties which are drawn up between heads of state and therefore require a Queen's Full Power. FCO ministers and certain UK Representatives hold general Full Powers giving them authority to sign any treaty (subject to the approval of the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary in each case).

Anyone else signing a treaty on behalf of the UK requires a special Full Power enabling them to sign the specific treaty.

The Full Powers document is drawn up by Treaty Section and (unless it is for signature by the Queen) submitted by the lead FCO department to the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary for signature. OGDs should therefore approach the appropriate FCO department in the first instance at director level requesting Full Powers. They should give the name, title, position and any decorations of the person to be named in the Full Power and also attach a copy of the treaty. If FCO or other departments are aware that a treaty signing is due, e.g. attendance at a conference and a signing of a treaty is likely; they should consult Treaty Section at the earliest possibility.

Full Powers are not required for a treaty in the form of an exchange of notes. It is not UK practice to issue Full Powers for agreements constituted by exchanges of notes because HM representatives abroad and ministers/heads of FCO departments in London conduct diplomatic correspondence in the name of the Secretary of State.

But a non-FCO minister or official should not sign without the specific authorisation of the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary or an FCO minister.


When non-FCO ministers are authorised by the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary to sign treaties it is the OGD‟s responsibility to arrange the signing ceremony. But Treaty Section now aim to attend and officiate at such ceremonies.

When that is not possible, they are available to give advice.

In any case, Treaty Section prepare the texts, and ribbon and seal them into binders for the ceremony. The latter task is done in Treaty Section‟s premises, usually in the presence of the FCO and/or OGD desk officer and an official from the other country's embassy or high commission, on the last working day before the signing.

The signature ceremony itself is divided into three parts:

–  –  –

(i) A table should be provided which is sufficiently long and wide to allow for the simultaneous signing of both copies of the agreement and display of the Full Powers.

Normally only the two signatories sit at the signing table, which should be put in a suitable position to allow photographs to be taken. Where possible the table, chairs, blotters, pens, treaties and Full Powers should be in place in advance of the ceremony. A "recce" a day or two before the signing could prove useful. (The rest of this assumes that Treaty Section are not present).

(ii) Immediately before signature takes place (if Treaty Section are not present), the FCO/OGD desk officer should insert the date on the English language texts and ask someone from the other side to do the same on the foreign language texts in their own language.

–  –  –

(i) At the signing table the other country‟s representative should sit to the right of the UK minister.

(ii) Each signatory signs first his own country's copy of the agreement, below his government's signature block. The United Kingdom original will mention the UK government first in the title and the signature blocks will be to the left, but to the right in the other state's original.

(iii) The agreements are exchanged behind the seated signatories by those attending them. They then each sign the other country's copy of the agreement.

(iv) The signatories then stand, shake hands and exchange binders. This ensures that each signatory ends up with their country's copy of the agreement. It also allows a good opportunity, if relevant, for photographs and filming.

–  –  –

(Again, if Treaty Section are not present), the FCO/OGD desk officer should ensure

that he/she:

(i) retrieves the UK original;

(ii) retains the other side's Full Powers; and (iii) records (in block capitals) the exact form of signature of the signatories in pencil under their respective signatures. This is essential for publication purposes.

All these items must be sent to Treaty Section for retention and publication as soon as possible after the ceremony.


Pages:   || 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 |

Similar works:

«THE CONCEPT OF IMITATION IN PLATO AND ARISTOTLE (ARISTO VE PLATO’DA TAKLİT) Hasan BAKTIR Ortadoğu Teknik Üniversitesi Eğitim Fakültesi Yabancı Diller Eğitimi Bölümü Arş. Görevlisi baktir@metu.edu.tr Abstract This paper discusses the concept of imitation in Plato and Aristotle. Plato and Aristotle argue that artist (Demiurge) and poet imitate nature, thus, a work of art is a relection of nature. However, they have different views on the functions of imitation in art and literature....»

«Missouri’s Poll Worker Guide A Reference for Election Judges Published by the Missouri Secretary of State Elections Division Missouri’s Poll Worker Guide A Reference for Election Judges These materials were developed by the University of Missouri under contract with the Missouri Secretary of State Elections Division, which is sole proprietor of all included herein. Polling Place Procedures, Ballot Handling and Security This module covers the steps necessary for you to take on Election Day...»

«forsaken of Inquiry The Report of the Missing Women Commission Executive Summary The Honourable Wally T. Oppal, QC Commissioner FORSAKEN The Report of the Missing Women Commission of Inquiry EXECUTIVE SUMMARY The Honourable Wally T. Oppal, QC Commissioner British Columbia November 19, 2012 Library and Archives Canada Cataloguing in Publication British Columbia. Missing Women Commission of Inquiry Forsaken [electronic resource] : the report of the Missing Women Commission of Inquiry / Wally T....»

«Research in Higher Education, Vol. 46, No. 7, November 2005 (Ó 2005) DOI: 10.1007/s11162-004-6226-6 A QUALITATIVE METHOD FOR ASSESSING FACULTY SATISFACTION Susan Ambrose,*,† Therese Huston,** and Marie Norman* Universities attempt to hire the highest quality faculty they can, but they are not always successful at retaining them. Furthermore, some faculty members who do remain may not function as engaging colleagues who make others want to stay. This study investigates why some faculty...»

«JABER AL AZMEH: ‘WOUNDS’ POSTER FROM A PROTEST IN KAFER NBL, SYRIA ‘VOLUNTEER’ ‘MY REQUEST IS FREEDOM’ Syria: Art, creative resistance and active citizenship The links between creative resistance and active citizenship, art and civic conscience have been a strong component of the Syrian uprising. Finally, citizens have turned into peer-creators and users, who have now the tools to express their creativity. BY DONATELLA DELLA RATTA • OCTOBER 2012 DURING THE EARLY DAYS of a freezing...»

«THE COFFIN CORNER: Vol. 26, No. 3 (2004) A CHRONOLOGY OF PRO FOOTBALL ON TELEVISION: Part 1 by Tim Brulia 1939first telecast of a pro football game. Brooklyn Dodgers hosting Philadelphia Eagles on experimental station W2XBS (NBC). 1948first season of network telecasts, ABC. First season of network telecast of NFL Championship game (Chicago Cardinals v. Philadelphia Eagles on ABC. Harry Wismer (?) commentator. Analyst – if any – unknown. Game played in blizzard in Shibe Park. 1949ABC in...»

«UCL CENTRE FOR ADVANCED SPATIAL ANALYSIS WORKING PAPERS SERIES Paper 154 Mar 10 Space, Scale, and Scaling in Entropy-Maximising ISSN 1467-1298 Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis University College London 1 19 Torrington Place Gower St London WC1E 7HB Tel: +44 (0)20 7679 1782 casa@ucl.ac.uk www.casa.ucl.ac.uk Space, Scale, and Scaling in Entropy-Maximising Michael Batty Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis (CASA) University College London (UCL) 1-19 Torrington Place, London WC1E 6BT, UK...»

«United States Office of Information EPA-745-B-99-014 Environmental Protection Analysis & Access December 1999 Agency Washington, DC 20460 EMERGENCY PLANNING AND COMMUNITY RIGHT-TO-KNOW ACT SECTION 313 Guidance for Reporting Hydrochloric Acid (acid aerosols including mists, vapors, gas, fog, and other airborne forms of any particle size) Section 313 of the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act of 1986 (EPCRA) requires certain facilities manufacturing, processing, or otherwise using...»

«THESES OF THE PHD DISSERTATION OVERVIEW OF INFORMATICS DEVELOPMENT OF FORESTRY SECTOR University of West Hungary Forestry and Game Management Doctoral Program Róth Gyula Subprogram E3 Forest Assets Management Supervisor: DR. LÁSZLÓ JÁGER Written by FERENC FACSKÓ forest engineer software architect SOPRON Doctoral Program: Roth Gyula Forestry and Game Management Leader: Prof. Dr. FARAGÓ SÁNDOR Program: Forest Assets Management (E3) Program leader: Prof. Em. Dr. BÉLA LETT Supervisor: Dr....»

«Rapport | Rapportnr. 40 | ISSN 1891-8050 | ISBN 978-82-7970-056-2 | År 2014 Registrering og overvåking av utvalgte insektarter i Oslo kommune V Hallvard Elven & Lars Ove Hansen Denne rapportserien utgis av: Naturhistorisk museum Postboks 1172 Blindern 0318 Oslo www.nhm.uio.no Forfattere: Hallvard Elven & Lars Ove Hansen Publiseringsform: Elektronisk (PDF) Sitering: Elven, H. og Hansen, L.O. 2014. Registrering og overvåking av utvalgte insektarter i Oslo kommune V. Naturhistorisk museum,...»

«EN Case No COMP/M.2854 RAG / DEGUSSA Only the English text is available and authentic. REGULATION (EEC) No 4064/89 MERGER PROCEDURE Article 6(2) NON-OPPOSITION Date: 18/11/2002 Also available in the CELEX database Document No 302M2854 Office for Official Publications of the European Communities L-2985 Luxembourg COMMISSION OF THE EUROPEAN COMMUNITIES Brussels, 18/11/2002 In the published version of this decision, some information has been omitted pursuant to Article SG (2002) D/232751 17(2) of...»

«Information package for PhD candidates WASS PhD Council October 2014 Table of contents 1. Organizational structure Wageningen University Wageningen UR Sciences Groups Chair Groups Graduate schools PhD Councils Type of PhD candidates Human Resource Management Liaison Office 2. Overview of the PhD programme Education within the PhD programme Go/no-go decision 3. Facilities, contact information, links, and tips Housing Financial issues Buddy system Contact information Tips from the PhD Council...»

<<  HOME   |    CONTACTS
2016 www.dissertation.xlibx.info - Dissertations, online materials

Materials of this site are available for review, all rights belong to their respective owners.
If you do not agree with the fact that your material is placed on this site, please, email us, we will within 1-2 business days delete him.