Document Type : Article


1 Ph.D. Candidate in International Law, Department of International Law, Qom Branch, Islamic Azad University, Qom, Iran

2 Associate Prof., Department of International Law, Faculty of Law, University of Hazrate Masoume, Qom, Iran


The concept of fragmentation of international law entered legal literature about 150 years ago. It represents the interaction between the proponents of plurality and unity in international law. The establishment of various international courts and tribunals has led to the plurality of interpretations in the realm of norms (the normative aspect of fragmentation) as well as jurisdictions (the institutional aspect of fragmentation). It also reflects the concern over incoherence in the development and interpretation of international law. The consequences of international-law fragmentation have ensued in international human rights law too. This article attempts to compare identical norms on international criminal responsibility which have acquired different meanings under different regimes or mechanisms. It deals with changes to human rights treaty norms in the realm of international individual responsibility. The paper will also examine the effect of international-law fragmentation on the development of human rights standards.


  1. English

    1. A) Books
    2. Alvarez, José, (2005), International Organizations as Law-Makers, London, Oxford University Press.
    3. Amerasinghe, F, (2005), Principles of the Institutional Organisations, Cambridge University Press.
    4. Condorelli, Lugi ,La Rosa , Anne-Marie and Scherrer, Sylvie (eds), (1996), The United Nations and International Humanitarian Law, Pedone, Paris.
    5. Durkheim, Émile, (1966), the division of labor in society, New York, Free Press.
    6. J. Toman, (1996), the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, Dartmouth Publishing Company, Paris.
    7. Shaw, Malcolm.N, (2008), International Law, Cambridge, Cambridge University Press.
    8. Wolfrum, Rüdiger &Röben, Volker (eds.), (2005), Developments of International Law in Treaty-making, Berlin, Springer.


    1. B) Articles
    2. Abbot, Kenneth W., Snidal, Duncan, (2000), ’Hard and Soft Law in International Governance’, International Organizations, Vol. 54.
    3. Agnew, John (2005), ‘Sovereignty Regimes: Territoriality and state Authority in Contemporary World Politics’, Anuals of the Association of American Geographers, Vol. 95.
    4. Benedict,Kingsbury (2003), “the International Legal Order”, New York University Law School Public Law Journal, No. 01- 04.
    5. Berman, Paul S., (2007), ‘A Pluralist Approach to International Law’, Yale Journal of International Law, Vol. 32.
    6. Borgen, Christopher J., (2005), “Resolving Treaty Conflicts”, George Washington International Law Review, Vol. 37.
    7. Cmiel, K., (2012), “The Recent History of Human Rights”, in I. Akira, P. Goedde and W. Hitchcock (eds.), the Human Rights Revolution: An International History, Oxford, Oxford University Press.
    8. D'Silva, Joel, (2003),”Development of Individual Criminal Responsibility under International Law”, Cochin University Law Review.
    9. Fischer-Lescano, Andreas & Gunther Teubner, (2004), “Regime-Collisions: The Vain Search for Legal Unity in the Fragmentation of Global Law”, Michigan Journal of International Law, Vol. 25.
    10. Graditzky, T., (1998), "Individual Criminal Responsibility for Violations of International Humanitarian Law Committed”, in Non-international Armed Conflicts, 322 IRRC 29.
    11. Jackson Preece, Jennifer (1998),"Ethnic Cleansing as an Instrument of Nation-State Creation: Changing State Practices and Evolving Legal Norms", Human Rights Quarterly, Vol. 20.
    12. Jenks, Wilfried, (1953), “The Conflict of Law-Making Treaties”, BYBIL Vol. 30.
    13. Koskenniemi, M., (1992), "Breach of Treaty or Non-Compliance? Reflections on the Enforcement of the Montreal Protocol", Yearbook of International Environmental Law, Vol. 3.
    14. Koskenniemi, Martti, (2006), Report of the Study Group of the International Law Commission, “Fragmentation of International Law: Difficulties Arising from the Diversification and Expansion of International Law General Assembly”, A/CN.4/L.682, INTERNATIONAL LAW COMMISSION, Fifty-eighth session,
    15. Lindroos, Anja and Mehling, Michael, (2005), “Dispelling the Chimera of ‘Self-Contained Regimes’ International Law and the WTO”, European Journal of International Law, Vol. 16.
    16. Martineau, Anne-Charlotte (2009), ‘the Rethoric of Fragmentation: Fear and Faith in International Law’, Leiden Journal of International Law, Vol. 22.
    17. Oomen, Barbara (2018),” Fragmentation/integration of human rights law—a users’ perspective on the CRPD”, in
      Brems, Eva / Ouald-Chaib, Saïla (Der.), Fragmentation and Integration in Human Rights Law, Edward Edgar Publishing, UK/USA 2018.
    18. Pauwelyn, Joost (2004), Diversity or Cacophony?, New Sources of Norms in International Law, Symposium, Bridging Fragmentation and Unity: International Law as a Universe of Interconncted Islands”, Michigan Journal of.International Law, Vol. 25.
    19. Ruggie, John Gerard (1992), ‘Multilateralism: the Anatomy of an Institution’, International Organizations, Vol. 46.
    20. Sreenivasa Rao, Pemmaraju (2004), “Multiple International Judicial Forums: a Reflection of the Growing Strength of International Law or Its Fragmentation?”, Michigan. Journal of International Law, Vol.25.
    21. Tomuschat, ‘Christian, (1993), “Obligations Arising for States Without or Against Their Will”, in: recueil des cours de l'académie de droit international de la haye, Vol. 241.


    1. C) Cases
    2. ICJ, 26 FEBRUARY 2007 Case Concerning Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (Bosnia and Herzegovina v Serbia and Montenegro).
    3. ICJ, 2001, Germany v. United States of America (LaGrand Case).
    4. ICTR- IT-01-48-T, (16November 2005) the Prosecutor v. Halilovic.
    5. ICTR-9S-l-T, (21 May 1999),the Prosecutor v. Clement Kayishema and Obed Ruzindana.
    6. ICTR, 97-23-S, (4 September 1998), the Prosecutor v.Jean Kambanda.
    7. ICTR-96-4-T, (2 September 1998), the Prosecutor v. Akayesu Jean-paul.
    8. ICTR-95-1-T, (2 November 1998), the Prosecutor v. Clement Kayishema and Obed Ruzindana.
    9. ICTY.IT-95-5/18-I, (1995), the Prosecutor v. Ratko Mladic.
    10. ICTY, IT-02-60-T, (17January 2007), the Prosecuter v.Blagojevic and Jokic.
    11. ICTY, IT-97-24-A, (22 March 2006), the Prosecutor v. Stakic.
    12. ICTY, IT-99-36-T, (1-September 2004), Prosecutor v.Brdjanin.
    13. ICTY, IT-98-29-A, (5 December 2003), the Prosecutor v.Galic.
    14. ICTY, IT-96-23, (12 June 2002), the Prosecutor v. Dragoljub Kunarac Radomir Kovac and Zoran Vukovic.
    15. ICTY-98-33-T, (2 August 2001), the Prosecutor v. Krstic.
    16. ICTY, IT-95-10-A, (5 July 2001), Jelisic Case.
    17. ICTY, IT-95-14-T (3 March 2000) the Prosecutor v.Blaškić.
    18. ICTY, IT-96-22-A (7 October 1997) the Prosecutor v.Erdemovic.
    19. ICTY, IT-94-1, (2 October 1995), the Prosecutor v. Dusko Tadic a/k/a "Dule.
    20. ICTY-IT 95-5, (16 May 1995), the Prosecutor v. Radovan Karadzic.
    21. ITLS, (2005), Mox Plant case, Request for Provisional Measures Order (Ireland v. the United Kingdom).


    Refrences In Persian:

    A) Books

    1. Sadat Meidani, Hossiyn & Mirabbasi, Bagher,(2013), International Adjudication, International Court of Justice ,New developments, Summaries of Judgements and Documents, Jungle Publication,Vol.2 (in Persian).


    1. B) Articles
    2. Mahmoudi ,Mehran,Rabiee Faradabne, Alireza,(2015),”Human Rights and the Integrity of Law:the Achievements of Human Rights Regional Courts”, Civil and Criminal Quarterly, No.26 (in Persian).
    3. Shahbazi, Aramesh (2010),” The Plurality of International Judicial system“, Public Law Research Quarterly, No.12 (in Persian).