UN Web Search Part 4

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    UN Web Search
Part 4: International Law

          Dag Hammarskjöld Library
       Department of Public Information
    United Nations Headquarters, New York

     UN Treaty Collection: http://untreaty.un.org/
* Accessible from the UN Home Page by
selecting International Law and then
* A subscription-based service but free
access is given for UN offices
* Full text of UN and non-UN treaties,
bilateral and multilateral from 1946 onwards
* Full text of recently deposited multilateral
•Status of treaties deposited with the
Secretary-General, (including declarations
and reservations made by states parties)
* Glossary of legal terms
* Site updated frequently

Select Access to Databases towards the
bottom right-hand side of the screen.
Treaty Databases

                   To access the up-to-date listing
                   of states parties to a treaty,
                   select Status of Multilateral
                   Treaties Deposited with the
Treaty Databases Example

                           Note that this page was
                           updated recently.

                           To search for a specific treaty,
                           for example, the Convention on
                           the High Seas (1958), firstly,
                           select INDEX from the link on
                           the right-hand side. (This index
                           facilitates online searching.)
Treaty Databases Example continued
                                     Using the find feature (Ctrl+F)
                                     enter high seas into the
                                     dialogue box and click on Find
Treaty Databases Example continued
                                     This quickly locates the
                                     Convention on the High Seas
                                     and clicking on the link
                                     retrieves the page showing the
                                     signatories and states parties
                                     to this treaty and the dates of
                                     signature and/or ratification.
Treaty Databases Example continued

                                     The 46 signatories and 62
                                     states parties to this convention
                                     are listed.

                                     To obtain the full text of this
                                     United Nations treaty, click on
                                     the link next to United Nations,
                                     Treaty Series, i.e., vol. 450, p.
Treaty Databases Example continued

                                     This takes us directly to the first
                                     page of the document. Bear in
                                     mind that conventions are
                                     lengthy documents and
                                     downloading all pages will take
Treaty Databases continued

                             Texts of treaties may also be
                             found by selecting United
                             Nations Treaty Series from
                             the Access to Databases
Treaty Databases Example continued   To search, for instance, for the
                                     Convention on International
                                     Trade in Endangered Species
                                     of Wild Fauna and Flora enter
                                     keyword(s) (i.e. any of those
                                     underlined) from the title. The
                                     keywords chosen are „wild
                                     fauna‟, therefore, the default
                                     setting of „Match this phrase‟
                                     is correct for our search. Then
                                     select Search.

                                     *Note that if keywords are
                                     entered that do not form a
                                     phrase, select the radio button
                                     „Match all these words‟ and
                                     then select Search.

                                     *Also note that as more
                                     keywords are input, fewer titles
                                     are retrieved.
Treaty Databases Example continued

                                     Two items are retrieved, of
                                     which the first is the required
                                     convention. Select Original
                                     Agreement to view the full text.
Treaty Databases Example continued

                                     Selecting French, English or
                                     Other will retrieve the official
                                     versions of the English, French
                                     or other language texts.

                                     Please note that the list of
                                     states shown is NOT an up-to-
                                     date list of states parties to the
                                     Convention. Only the
                                     depositary organisation or the
                                     depositary states will be able to
                                     provide up-to-date information
                                     on the status of their treaties.
Treaty Databases Example continued

                                     Bear in mind that conventions
                                     are lengthy documents and that
                                     downloading all pages will take

                                     *Note that authentic versions of
                                     the text are given in Spanish
                                     Chinese and Russian as well
                                     as English and French.
Treaty Databases Example continued

                                     To view texts of recent treaties,
                                     return to the Access to
                                     Databases page and select
                                     Texts of Recently Deposited
                                     Multilateral Treaties located
                                     towards the bottom of the page.
Treaty Databases continued

                             Texts on this page date back to
                             the United Nations Framework
                             Convention on Climate Change
                             adopted in New York on 9 May
                             1992. Many texts can be
                             viewed and/or downloaded in
                             all six languages.
Treaty Handbook

                  To find the meaning of a legal
                  term, for example, „Accession‟,
                  a useful glossary is available by
                  firstly selecting Treaty
                  Handbook from the Access to
                  Databases page (click on
                  “please select” to visualize the
                  drop-down menu that contains
                  the Handbook).
Treaty Handbook Example

                          Select Glossary, which is last
                          in the series of options on the
                          left-hand side.
Treaty Handbook Example continued

                                    The definition of „Accession‟
                                    appears on the first page.

                                    UN Documentation
                                    Research Guide Special
                                    Topics: International Law
End of Part 4