In a political climate which encourages interdependence between states, international law is constantly developing, and is increasingly becoming a key factor in the organisation of inter-state relations. The Council of Europe is accordingly working to co-ordinate its member States’ activities in this field, through the work of the Committee of Legal Advisers on Public International Law (CAHDI).
The CAHDI is the only truly pan-European forum where legal advisers of the Ministers for foreign affairs of the member States of the Council of Europe and a significant number of observer States and Organisations can exchange and possibly co-ordinate their views regarding major issues of public international law.
The CAHDI meets twice a year to exchange ideas and discuss issues arising in this field, either at the request of the Committee of Ministers, steering and ad hoc committees, or on its own initiative. Its aims are to:
Issues examined include for instance:
The recent work of the CAHDI on reservations to international treaties is of particular significance. The CAHDI has achieved agreement between member States on the question of inadmissible reservations and as a result, the Committee of Ministers adopted Recommendation No. R (99) 13 on responses to inadmissible reservations to international treaties. In this connection, the CAHDI also functions as a European Observatory of reservations to international treaties and periodically monitors outstanding reservations to international treaties.
The CAHDI also liaises with the International Law Commission of the United Nations and the Council of the European Union’s Working Party on Public International Law (COJUR).