Belarusian Journal of International Law and International Relations 2003 — N 2


International Law

Theoretical Issues

Direct Application of International Treaties: Theoretical Aspect — Alexey Barbuk

International Organizations

Law-Making Activities of International Organizations: Theory and Modern Trends — Igor Barkovsky

International Private Law

The Background of International Adoption Legislation in Belarus — Elena Kukharionok

Legal Regulations in International Economic Relations — Olga Tolochko

International Relations

Refugees in the World: 2002. Achievements and Problems — Ilija Todorovic, Yury Morgun, Andrey Selivanov

Main Problems in Belarus — NATO Relations in the 1990s — Andrey Rusakovich

More Features of the EU Social Policy Mechanism Functioning at the Present Stage — Marina Savich

General Characteristics of the Bilateral Relations between the Republic of Belarus and the Baltic States (1990—2002) — Nadezhda Khalimanovich

On the Development of Relations and Prospects for Cooperation between the Republic of Belarus and the Kingdom of Morocco — Tatiana Evseichik

British Imperial Idea in the Second Half of the XIX Century: Directions and Dynamics of Development — Marina Gleb

The Refugee Problem in Belarus During World War I — Vadim Samatyia

International Economic Relations

The Trends of the Freight Services Market Development — Nikita Kuchevsky

Consumer Services in Belarus and Western Countries: State and Problems — Dmitry Rondak

Some Specific Features of Belarusian Economy Modelling — Ernest Aksen, Sergey Rudenkov

The Economic Mechanism of Currency Integration of Belarus and Russia on the Basis of Modern Economic Theory of Macroeconomic Equilibrium — Vitaly Kozlovsky


English Summaries

"Direct Application of International Treaties: Theoretical Aspect" (Alexey Barbuk)

The Law on International Treaties of the Republic of Belarus sets up a general basis for direct application of international agreements in the national legal system. Direct effect of international treaties is a new phenomenon in the Belarusian judicial practice provoking many questions concerning its scope, practical implications, advantages and difficulties. This legal concept requires some clarification for its effective usage. The present article examines the theoretical background of the concept, its origin as well as relevant practical examples of its application. The article mentions also some critical views with regard to the idea of direct effect of international treaties and provides several suggestions concerning direct application of international agreements in the Belarusian legal order.

"Law-Making Activities of International Organizations: Theory and Modern Trends" (Igor Barkovsky)     

The article is devoted to the topical issue of international organizations participation in law-making activities. It also deals with theory and modern trends of law-making activities of these organizations.

The author gives his analysis of the following important theoretical and practical issues: international legal personality of international organizations, the mechanism of participation of international organizations in national law-making and their activities in this field.

The author reveals some modern trends of law-making activities of international organizations. Special attention is paid to the trends of the current law-making in the Commonwealth of Independent States with the focus on the draft of the CIS Regulations on a Single Register of Legal Documents. The register is intended to be the system of account, registration and formal publication of the CIS legal instruments. It will be based on modern computer information technologies for systematization, maintenance and providing for informational needs of users. The author notes the necessity of improvement of the mechanism of agenda formation of the CIS Council of the Heads of States and Prime Ministers summits.

In the author’s opinion it is expedient to develop a normative act regulating the procedure of forming appropriate agenda for the sessions of the CIS Council of the Heads of States and the CIS Council of Prime Ministers taking into consideration the experience of other international organizations. Separate items of the agenda draft for the CIS Council of the Heads of State could contain documents for discussion to be signed, documents to be signed and documents to be delegated to other CIS bodies.

"The Background of International Adoption Legislation in Belarus" (Elena Kukharionok)

At present Belarus is active in conducting proceedings in international adoption. The country collaborates with ten countries: Belgium, Denmark, Israel, Ireland, Italy, Canada, the USA, France, the FRG and Sweden.

Joining the international adoption process, every state, including the Republic of Belarus strives to develop special legislation, regulating this process. But this requires a long time and is connected with a number of controversial issues.

The first legal norms, regulating adoption with a foreign dimension appeared in the territory of present-day Belarus back in the XIX century. Those were the norms of Russian legislation extended onto Belarusian territories which happened to be annexed to the Russian empire as a result of three divisions of Rzech Pospolyta.

After the collapse of the Russian empire and the establishment of Soviet power the tsarist legislation was abolished and the adoption institution eliminated. It was restored in 1927 only. In 1928 legal provisions regarding adoption complicated by a foreign element appeared in legislation.

In 1969 the new family code of the BSSR fixed legal regulation of two groups of relations of adoption with a foreign element: adoption of a Soviet child living outside the USSR and adoption of a Soviet child living within the USSR by foreign nationals. Later, Soviet and foreign citizens obtained the right to adopt children of foreign citizenship with permanent residence in the BSSR. However, actual application of the norms on adoption complicated by a foreign element was very rare and the mechanism of legal implementation of this kind of adoption remained undeveloped.

The collapse of the USSR and the declaration of sovereignty of the Republic of Belarus gave an impetus to Belarusian legislation reforms. The modification was greatly influenced by international legal norms. The Republic of Belarusrecognizes the precedence of generally accepted principles of international law. It has ratified the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child and signed the 1993 Hague Convention.

The RB has become party to the 1993 CIS countries Convention on Legal Help and Legal Relations in Civil, Family and Criminal Cases and has concluded bilateral agreements on legal help with Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Vietnam which contain the norms regulating proceedings in international adoption cases.

At present the legal basis of the RB on international adoption is made up by the following legal instruments: the 2000 version of the law "On the Rights of the Child", the 1999 Marriage and Family Code; the Law "On Citizenship of the Republic of Belarus" from August 1, 2002; the provision "On Procedure of Adoption of Children and Taking Them in Ward" by Foreign Citizens, Stateless Persons and Belarusian Citizens with Permanent Residence on the Territory of a Foreign State” from October 28, 1999 including the amendments introduced by the resolution from July 11, 2001 and other normative acts.

The process of formation of international adoption legislation in Belarus has been rather complicated, controversial and it is not over yet. Nevertheless it can be confidently stated that the existing legal basis, regulating the proceedings of international adoption in the RB is sufficiently developed and in general meets the internationally recognized standards in this sphere.

"Legal Regulations in International Economic Relations" (Olga Tolochko)

The article is focused on external economic relations as specific social relations subject to legal regulations. The subject of the study is "external economic relations", their main features and differences from related legal categories such as "international economic relations", "external economic ties", "external economic activities". The aim of the study is specifying the essence, main features and classification of external economic relations as an object of legal impact for further development of conceptual basis of their adjustment.

The object and the subject predetermine scientific novelty and importance of the results of the study. The author establishes significant differences between international economic, domestic economic and external economic relations concerning the legal impact by national law and the necessity of using special means of legal regulation due to their relation with foreign law and order systems and international law.

"Refugees in the World: 2002. Achievements and Problems" (Ilija Todorovic, Yury Morgun, Andrey Selivanov)

This is a summary of the changes in the refugee situation in the world in 2002 and of the activities of the UNHCR. The greatest progress for refugees has been achieved in Afghanistan: about 2 million refugees who had been forced out of the country, came back. Changes for the better took place in Sri Lanka where the conflicting sides stopped the ten-year-old long civil war and concluded a Norway-mediated agreement. And some of the first of a million refugees started returning home from exile. A hope for the end of an over 25-year-long civil war in Angola has emerged. A cease-fire has been reached and refugees are coming back. After the ten-year-long bloodshed the situation in Sierra-Leone started to come back to normal, with over 200 000 refugees having returned to the country. The main tasks in protecting refugees in the Balkans have been implemented, that is why the UNHCR is reducing its activities in the region, though some issues remain. East Timor has achieved full independence and 250 000 people returned home, with the conditions in the country coming back to normal so much that the UNHCR applied the 1951 Refugee Convention article on terminating its force. Similarly, this article has been applied in regard to the refugees from Eritrea who had found temporary asylum in Sudan.

The refugee situation in Belarus is summed up. The main task of the UNHCR here is assisting Belarusian authorities in humane management of disordered refugee flows with a focus to protecting the rights of asylum seekers and refugees according to international standards and norms.

A brief review is given to the unsolved issues such as the long-standing refugee crises and acute crisis refugee situations in various regions of the world: Liberia, Cote d’Ivoire, Burundi, Sierra Leone, West Sahara, Colombia, Azerbaijan, Butan. The article concludes in a brief analysis of the prospects of further activity on reducing the acuteness of refugee crises: holding a global meeting of the representatives of 127 states on the problems of refugees in Geneva in 2001; adoption of the Protection Agenda, certain guidelines for governments and humanitarian organizations for their efforts in raising the refugee assistance efficiency; introducing new ideas by the High Commissioner of the UNHCR: the new approach to raise the effectiveness of the 1951 Convention, called Convention Plus; the appeal to join the efforts of some UN bodies to solve the problems of both refugees and local population, the new approach 4R, that is the idea of developing a holistic concept of refugee protection embracing four main stages: repatriation, reintegration, rehabilitation and reconstruction. “The results achieved in Afghanistan in 2002 were striking. We are facing further difficult tasks” (Ruud Lubbers).

"Main Problems in Belarus — NATO Relations in the 1990s" (Andrey Rusakovich)

The article deals with the main problems in the Belarus — NATO relations in the 1990s. The author traces the history of the relations formation, identifies chief periods of their development, analyzes the difficulties and also the stands of the parties on the key problems of European and global security. The article explores the evolution in the attitude of the Belarusian authorities to cooperation with NATO. Significant attention is paid to such problems as Belarus’ fulfilment of its international treaty obligations in the field of disarmament and weapons limitation, creation of a nuclear-free zone in Europe, the Belarusian authorities’ attitude to the NATO expansion, the relations aggravation during the 1999 conflict in Kosovo. The article also studies the Belarus — NATO cooperation issues within the CEAP and the Partnership for Peace frameworks. These problems are revealed with regard to Belarusian foreign policy and the EU common stand toward Belarus.

In general, the author believes that the Belarus — NATO relations in the 1990s faced complex evolution developments reflecting all nuances of the internal political situation in Belarus. The first half of the 1990s was characterized by the formation of cooperation between Belarus and NATO and its gradual growth. In the second half of the 1990s the western countries including the NATO organization limited their contacts with Belarus due to modifications in democratic reforms, human rights and civil society. In fact, NATO-Belarus relations have not exceeded the limits of the framework of CEAP and the Partnership for Peace. Still, it should be mentioned that Belarus took an important place in the European security system in the 1990s and the country’s policy was mainly in accordance with international treaties.

"More Features of the EU Social Policy Mechanism Functioning at the Present Stage" (Marina Savich)

Main features of the EU social policy mechanism functioning at present are determined by two basic moments: rather slow process to expansion of the competence of communautaire social institutes and problematical character of realization of principles of convergence and harmonization state — members’ social policies; in view of big distinctions in the levels of social and economic development. Nevertheless the tendency to enhancement of the EU’s institutes’ role in realization of social policy  has recently emerged. It has found reflection in creation of new instruments and institutes of social policy of EU and reforming old instruments, and also in expansion of their functions in the given area. Thus, despite the priority of subsidiary principle in realization of social policy of the European Union the basis for its structure registration has already been created.

"General Characteristics of the Bilateral Relations between the Republic of Belarus and the Baltic States (1990—2002)" (Nadezhda Khalimanovich)

The article consists of two parts. In the first part of this work the relations with the Baltic states on the  scale of Belarusian foreign policy are examined, in the second part the place and role of the Republic of Belarus in the foreign policy of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia are researched.

The dynamics if Belarusian-Baltic relations is shown. The author distinguishes two periods in the developments of these relations and gives them a rather detailed characteristization. Special attention is paid to the political sphere of the relations between Belarus with Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia.

The official  position of the Belarusian side as well as the Baltic states concerning bilateral Belarusian-Baltic relations and also  the views of experts  on these questions are given in the article. The author describes the characteristic of the priorities of the foreign policies of Belarus, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia and shows general and special features of the Belarusian-Latvian, Belarusian-Lithuanian and Belarusian-Estonian relations.

The author also defines some prospects of the development of intergovernmental cooperation between Belarus and the Baltic states and gives the arguments in favour of the "Baltic vector" of the Belarusian foreign policy intensification.

"On the Development of Relations and Prospects for Cooperation between the Republic of Belarus and the Kingdom of Morocco" (Tatiana Evseichik)

The goal of the article is to analyze bilateral relations in the context of Belarusian foreign policy in the Arab world. The present research focuses on the development of Belarus — Morocco relationship from the moment of establishment of diplomatic relationship till nowadays.  The author examines the main tendencies of relation development and compares it with their current state. The article reviews two sides of developing relationship: political contacts and economic cooperation between The Republic of Belarus and The Kingdom of Morocco. The analysis presents achievements, problems and prospects of the relations development. To illustrate her point of view the author states the facts and examples and presents a table, which helps to visualize the trade tendencies of past years.

"British Imperial Idea in the Second Half of the XIX Century: Directions and Dynamics of Development" (Marina Gleb)

The article is the first in national scholarship to explore the evolution of the imperial idea in Britain in the second half of the XIX century. The author identifies economic, political and cultural aspects of the imperial idea and focuses on the definition of the changes the concept of the Empire underwent over the period from 1850 to 1900.

It is pointed out that the shaping of the imperial idea in the 1850s—1860s took place under the direct influence of liberal ideology and colonial policy of Liberal Cabinets. The imperial idea at that time reflected the position of Great Britain as the world’s leading industrial country, for which colonial possessions ceased to be of vital economic necessity. The author arrives at a conclusion that the gist of the imperial idea was the concept of self-governing as logical progress of the colonial communities of the Empire.

The 1870s are noted to be an important landmark in the development of the imperial idea. For the first time in the long record of British colonial policy the government in 1874—1880 was consistent and open in its course towards consolidation and expansion of the Empire. At the same time, in the late 1870s the imperial idea became an integral part of Conservative ideology.

The author comes to a conclusion that the changes which took place in the imperial idea in the last decades of the XIX century were determined both by objective realia of internal political development and overseas policy of Great Britain and by social attitudes to the political, economic and sociocultural problems of the time. In particular, the formation of the imperial economic union was intended to reduce the effect of the activities of the rival states whose policy, in British public opinion, caused the decline of business activity and trade in the country. At the same time, developing of various projects of the imperial federation binding the metropoly and self-governing colonies was determined to a large extent by the aggravation of the Irish problem in the last third of the XIX century.

The author emphasizes the importance of the activities of the civilizing mission as the core of the conservative variant of the imperial idea, spread in Great Britain in the 1880s—1890s. It was at that time that most imperial ideologists elaborated the theme of the imperial mission of the British nation as one of the most important conditions of its existence and survival.

The author concludes that the revival of colonial expansion and the increase of the number of projects of consolidation and expansion of the Empire promoted the formation of new approaches to determination of the future of the British Empire. At that period imperialism became the dominant ideology of British society.

"The Refugee Problem in Belarus During World War I" (Vadim Samatyia)

The article describes the events of World War I when the military action of the German army brought on its successful offensive at the eastern front. The German occupation of the western provinces of the Russian Empire caused massive displacement of local population. The Russian government issued the decree about forced evacuation of the population from the territories under the threat of seizure.

The author studies the historical aspect of formation and development of state approaches to the organization of refugee movement and rendering assistance to people who had suffered from military actions in the western provinces of the Russian Empire.

     Among the reasons of the article topicality the author singles out the amount of refugees, the consequences of possible epidemics in the armies and other factors of social tension threatening the Russian troops. The author studies the activities of the Front Commissioners for Migrants and also the adoption of the law meeting the migrants’ needs as the elements of the state policy in this sphere. The definition of the migrant status, establishment of a special meeting on the migrants’ settlement and developing the guidelines for the migrants’ settlement are singled out as the prerequisites for formation of state and legal regulation in the sphere of rendering assistance to migrants.

"The Trends of the Freight Services Market Development" (Nikita Kuchevsky)

Belarusian transport is the leading national infrastructure economy branch. It is a material resource base for industrial ties in trade between countries and regions of the world. It is also one of the factors of organizing the world economic market and providing further territorial division of labour.

The role of various kinds of transport is determined not only by intense development of trade and economic relations world-wide but also by the international economic market, price fluctuations for basic export and import produce and growth of standards of living.

"Consumer Services in Belarus and Western Countries: State and Problems" (Dmitry Rondak)

Consumer services in Belarus are a branch that requires radical changes. The negative trend is especially acute in rural areas: low incomes of village people lead to low demand for work and services making the branch unprofitable.

The analysis of segments and performance of consumer services in Belarus and abroad allow to specify the ways of development and raising profitability of the branch in the near future.

"Some Specific Features of Belarusian Economy Modelling" (Ernest Aksen, Sergey Rudenkov)

The work sets out the US and Belarusian economic models according to a single pattern with regard to the interests of major economic subjects of each state. The authors single out only some peculiarities of the Belarusian economic model. However, they extremely complicate the model, thus requiring corresponding statistic and analytic material for the successful realization of the model formed. As the material is collected and processed, the model will be realized and conclusions made of the prospective advantages and drawbacks of the economies compared.

"The Economic Mechanism of Currency Integration of Belarus and Russia on the Basis of Modern Economic Theory of Macroeconomic Equilibrium" (Vitaly Kozlovsky)

The introduction of a single currency is one of the fundamentals of the Union State of Belarus and Russia. The experience of euro introduction and its rate adjustment as well as the currency exchange system in the former Warsaw Treaty member-states may become the basis of the currency exchange system relations between Belarus and Russia, according to the author. From this point of view the author gives his analysis and proposals on this issue.

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