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European Convention on the Recognition of the Legal Personality of International Non-Governmental Organisations

Adopted on: 24 April 1986
Reference number: ETS No.124 Adopted by: Council of Europe
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This Convention, in its preamble, recognises the role and work of international non-governmental organisations. It applies to associations, foundations and other private institutions (referred as NGOs) that fulfil the following criteria: have a non-profit-making aim of international utility; have been established by an instrument governed by the internal law of a state; carry on their activities with effect in at least two states; and have their statutory office in the territory of a state having ratified the Convention and the central management and control in the territory of that state or of another state. According to the Convention, these are the criteria for the organisations to be called international NGOs. The Convention consist of 11 Articles, in which Articles 1 to 4 describe the principles related to the recognition of the legal personality of international NGOs and the remaining articles are more of a procedural character. Paragraph 1 of Article 2 lays down the rule of recognition as of right in all contracting states of the legal personality and capacity acquired in one contracting state. Consequently, no special procedure has to be followed to obtain recognition of legal personality. As of 10 September 2018, 12 countries had ratified the Convention.

Youth specific: No

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