Membership of Ecuador in International Organizations based in The Hague.

  • Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW)
  • International Criminal Court (ICC)
  • International Court of Justice (ICJ)
  • The Hague Conference on Private International Law (HCCH)
  • Common Fund for Commodities (CFC)
  • Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA)

Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW)

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) is the implementing body of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC or Convention). The OPCW is given the mandate to achieve the object and purpose of the Convention, to ensure the implementation of its provisions, including those for international verification of compliance with it, and to provide a forum for consultation and cooperation among States Parties.

The Technical Secretariat of the OPCW is responsible for the day-to-day administration and implementation of the Convention, including inspections, while the Executive Council and the Conference of the States Parties are decision-making organs designed primarily to determine questions of policy and resolve matters arising between the States Parties on technical issues or on interpretations of the Convention. The chairs of the Executive Council and the Conference are appointed by each body's membership. The Technical Secretariat is headed by a Director-General, who is appointed by the Conference on the recommendation of the Council.

The OPCW States Parties already represent about 98 percent of the global population and landmass, as well as 98 percent of the worldwide chemical industry.
For more information: Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW)

Ecuador in the OPCW

Ecuador signed onto the “Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production, Stockpiling and Use of Chemical Weapons and on their Destruction (Chemical Weapons Convention)” on 14 January, 1993, ratifying it on 6 September, 1995.  It entered into force in the country on 29 April, 1997.

As it is not a possessor State, Ecuador complies with its responsibility of disarmament and world peace.  The role of Ecuador in the OPCW can be summarized in the following ways:

  • After an absence of ten years, Ecuador returned to the Executive Council of the OPCW for the period from May 2010 to May 2012.  Ecuador is one of the 41 member countries of the Council, seven of which are from GRULAC countries.
  • In November, 2011, during the Conference of States Parties, Ecuador was re-elected for the period May 2012 to May 2014.
  • Since 2 May, 2012, Ecuador occupies the region’s Vice-Presidency in the Executive Council.  As Vice-President of the Executive Council, the Ambassador of Ecuador coordinates the informal consultations of Article X regarding Assistance and Protection.

From 26 to 30 November, 2012, Ecuador participated in the last (17th) Conference of States Parties of the OPCW.

International Criminal Court (ICC)

The International Criminal Court (ICC), governed by the Rome Statute, is the first permanent, treaty based, international criminal court established to help end impunity for the perpetrators of the most serious crimes of concern to the international community.

The ICC is an independent international organisation, and is not part of the United Nations system. Its seat is at The Hague in the Netherlands. Although the Court’s expenses are funded primarily by States Parties, it also receives voluntary contributions from governments, international organisations, individuals, corporations and other entities.

The international community has long aspired to the creation of a permanent international court, and, in the 20th century, it reached consensus on definitions of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. The Nuremberg and Tokyo trials addressed war crimes, crimes against peace, and crimes against humanity committed during the Second World War.

In the 1990s, after the end of the Cold War, tribunals like the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia and for Rwanda were the result of consensus that impunity is unacceptable. However, because they were established to try crimes committed only within a specific time-frame and during a specific conflict, there was general agreement that an independent, permanent criminal court was needed.

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EEcuador and the International Criminal Court (ICC)

Ecuador signed the Statute of Rome on 7 October, 1998, and ratified it on 5 February, 2002.  It was a member of the Pension Committee and Budget and Finance Committee.  Currently, Ecuador is part of the Board of Directors of the Trust Fund for Victims.
The last session of the Assembly of States Parties of the International Criminal Court (11th) took place from 14 to 23 November, 2012, in the city of The Hague. 

International Court of Justice (ICJ)

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations (UN). The Court’s role is to settle, in accordance with international law, legal disputes submitted to it by States and to give advisory opinions on legal questions referred to it by authorized United Nations organs and specialized agencies.

Text: Webpage of the International Court of Justice:
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Ecuador and the International Court of Justice (ICJ)

Ecuador has a particular interest in two cases of the International Court of Justice: Ecuador’s demand against Colombia because of the fumigation with glyphosate in the border zone between the two countries.

Ecuador-Colombia Concluded Case

On 31 March, 2008, Ecuador presented a demand against Colombia because of serious damages caused to the health of its inhabitants, the ecosystem and the biota of the Ecuadorian border resulting from aerial spraying of toxic herbicides (glyphosate), used to eradicate illicit crops.
This judicial process has completed the following stages:

  • On 29 April, 2009, Ecuador presented its Memorial.
  • The Counter-Memorial of Colombia was presented on 31 January, 2011.
  • The Reply of Ecuador was presented on 31 January, 2011.
  • Colombia presented its Rejoinder on 2 February, 2012.

With the submission of the Rejoinder by Colombia, the written part of the process was concluded.  On 26 March, 2012, the Court announced that the public hearings will begin on 30 September, 2013.

The Hague Conference on Private International Law (HCCH)

The Hague Conference on Private International Law was established to codify private international law at the international level. Several attempts to do so, in Europe, had failed before the first time the Conference met on 12 September, 1893. Such attempts were made by the Italian jurist Mancini, together with Dutch Tobias Carel Asser.  The latter is credited with the birth of the Hague Conference and was elected to lead the first Conference, the culmination of thirty years of efforts, in which thirteen European states participated.

The Statute giving the Conference the status of international intergovernmental organization took effect on 15 July, 1955.

The governing body of the Conference is the Council on General Affairs and Policy, which is made up of all its Members. It meets, in principle, on a yearly basis.

The Permanent Bureau is composed of a Secretary General and four Secretaries who are appointed by the Government of that country to the Commission proposal of State.

Special Committees, in which experts meet from various Member States who have expressed their desire to participate, operate between the Sessions, prepare draft agreements or address issues of private international law within the mandate of the Conference. Ecuador participated in the 2007 Special Commission in which The Hague Convention on the International Recovery of Child Support and Other Forms of Family Maintenance was adopted and in the Commission that monitors this Convention’s implementation and the feasibility of assigning a protocol to the Convention, which was held in October 2009.  It has also participated in the Special Commission on the Implementation of the Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption in April 2010.

Ecuador in The Hague Conference on Private International Law (HCCH)

Upon adhering to the Statute, Ecuador became a Member State of The Hague Conference on Private International Law, on 15 November, 2007.  Membership allows States to participate and vote in the two annual meetings of the Council on General Affairs and Policy that take place during the months of April and October.  This is the body responsible for directing the work of the Permanent Bureau and approving the budget of the Conference and the texts of the new instruments. Ecuador named the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Integration, Directorate General of Legal Counsel, as Central Authority.

Ecuador is party to the following Conventions:

Convention of 5 October 1961 Abolishing the Requirement of Legalisation for Foreign Public Documents, also known as the Apostille Convention.

This Convention was developed to facilitate the circulation of public documents executed in one State party to the Convention in another State that is also part of the Convention. The addition of a seal or small document called an Apostille will allow the user to avoid long document legalization procedures.

Ecuador acceded to this Convention on 2 July, 2004, which became effective on 2 April, 2005. The competent authority is the Directorate General of Legalisation the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Integration.

Convention of 25 October, 1980, on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction

The object of this agreement is not the determination of the custody of a minor moved unlawfully to a country in which the minor does not have habitual residence but rather that the actions of the child abductor who takes refuge in another State require practical and legal consequences through securing “the prompt return of children wrongfully removed to or retained in any Contracting State” (Art. 1a of the Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction).

Ecuador adhered to this Convention on 22 January, 1992, which entered into force on 1 April of the same year.  The National Authority designated to this Convention is the National Council for Childhood and Adolescence.

Convention of 29 May, 1993, on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption

This Convention applies when a child with habitual residence in a Contracting State, State of origin, will be moved to another Contracting State, the receiving State, by virtue of which an adoption by spouses or a person ordinarily residing in a Contracting State that is not that of the adopted or adoptable child.

Ecuador signed this Convention on 3 May, 1994, ratified it on 7 September, 1995, and it became effective on 1 January, 1996.  

Convention of 19 October, 1996, on Jurisdiction, Applicable Law, Recognition, Enforcement and Co-operation in Respect of Parental Responsibility and Measures for the Protection of Children

This Convention contains rules to determine who the competent authorities are for taking necessary measures to protect a child who is in another State other than that of their usual residence and determine the applicable law.

Ecuador joined this international instrument on 5 November 5, 2002, which came into force on 1 September, 2003.

More Information on The Hague Conference on Private International Law:

Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA)

The Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) is an intergovernmental organization established in 1899 to facilitate arbitration and other forms of dispute resolution between States; currently it has 115 Member States.

The CPA has expanded its activities to the private sector and current cases in which States, state entities, intergovernmental organizations and private parties are involved.

The International Office, headed by its Secretary General, is responsible for complying with the mandate of the Administrative Council, which meets twice a year before this body, with the participation of the Embassies. The Board determines the administrative work, future activities and approves the budget of the Court.

The Board does not interfere in the arbitration work of the Court.

The Budget Committee is the body responsible for the analysis of the budget submitted by the Secretary-General and for presenting this to the Administrative Council for approval.

Ecuador in the Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA)

Ecuador’s accession to the founding convention of the Permanent Court of Arbitration of 1899 occurred on 3 July, 1907.

Ecuador has been part of the working groups that have been formed for the development of Economic and Financial Rules governing the preparation of the Budget of the CPA.

Any communication relating to arbitration cases that Ecuador has before this forum is directly addressed to the State Attorney (Attorney General).

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Common Fund for Commodities

The objective of the Common Fund for Commodities (CFC) is to finance development projects.  In this regard, it seeks to improve the social and economic development of development countries that depend upon commodities.  Through its mandate, the Common Fund has financed projects for almost two decades.

On 27 June, 1980, the Common Fund for Commodities was adopted in Geneva by the Negotiation Conference of a Common Fund for the United Nations.  The agreement entered into force on 19 June, 1989.  The Common Fund has 105 Member States, 10 institutional members including the European Union (EU), the African Union/African Economic Community (AU/AEC), the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) and the Caribbean Community (CARICOM).

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