Nuclear Disarmament | An overview of Customary International Law
Dr. Gazal Gupta
Former Assistant Professor, Lovely Professional University, Punjab
International law consists of not only treaties but some other imported sources as well. Among the sources of international law, enumerated by Article 38, of the Charter of the International Court of Justice, are international customs, the general principles of law recognized by civilized nations, judicial decisions, and the opinions of outstanding jurists, all of which strongly establish the illegality of nuclear weaponry. The absence of a specific treaty banning the use or manufacture of nuclear weapons means that only one of the sources of international law is absent. All the other – international customs, general principles of law recognized by civilized nations, judicial decisions and juristic writing- can strongly be invoked. The advent of the nuclear bomb and the manufacture of nuclear weaponry in several countries have not displaced this principle. There is also a strong body of international declarations, which, although they do not have the force of law in themselves, yet strongly indicate the sense of the international community on this issue and reinforce the contention that such a principle now forms part of customary international law.