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Public International Law


Admission requirements

Inleiding internationaal publiekrecht (BAI) or equivalent (for LL.C. students) or Inleiding internationaal en europees recht.

If you experience problems communicating in English (listening, reading, writing and/or speaking), you are encouraged to enrol for the 5 ECTS optional course ‘Legal English for Bachelor students’ offered by the Academic Language Centre of Leiden University.


The course Public International Law builds on the elementary knowledge provided in the course Inleiding Internationaal Publiekrecht. In that course the emphasis was on acquiring knowledge of the concepts on which general international law is based (incl. sources, legal subjects, state responsibility and dispute settlement) and the relationship between international law and national law. The aim of this course is to teach you about certain specific fields of public international law, such as the law on peace and security and human rights. You will learn to analyse legal issues with regard to specific fields of international law and to relate these to the concepts on which general international law is based. This course also forms a good preparation for the elective courses Wereldrecht and Basics of International Humanitarian Law.

Course objectives

Objectives of the course
After completing the course you will be able to:

  • distinguish between the various fields of international law (e.g. peace and security, the law of war, international environmental law);

  • determine the applicable rules within these fields and explain and apply these in medium complex cases;

  • relate current events in the news to the applicable rules of international law – in so far as these fall within the scope of the course – and explain/comment on these events using the applicable rules;

  • interpret current developments in international law;

  • independently establish the legal issues in cases of varying complexity, determining the applicable rules and applying these to the facts of the case.

In addition you will acquire the following skills: – You will be able to provide a structured answer to questions concerning both knowledge and application of the theory and practice of international law in writing. – You will be capable of independently acquiring information (e.g on the Internet) on the basis of concrete instructions. – You will be capable of giving oral arguments to substantiate your opinion of legal developments during the seminars.


The timetable of this course can be found in uSis.

Mode of instruction


  • Number of (2 hour) lectures: 6

  • Names of lecturers: Prof. Nico Schrijver

  • Required preparation by students: reading the prescribed material


  • Number of (2 hour) seminars: 5

  • Names of instructors: Daniëlla Dam-de Jong and others

  • Required preparation by students: submit a written work in advance of the seminar (see blackboard for more information)

Other methods of instruction

  • Description: extensive seminar (as an alternative to the intensive seminars)

  • Number of (2 hour) instructions: 5

  • Names of instructors: Daniëlla Dam-de Jong and others

  • Required preparation by students: reading the prescribed material

Assessment method

Examination form(s)

  • written exam (in English!) consisting of open questions

Submission procedures

Areas to be tested within the exam
The reader for this course will contain more detailed information on the subjects that will be part of the examination as well as on the required reading materials.


More information on this course is offered in Blackboard.

Reading list

Obligatory course materials

  • Jan Klabbers, International Law, Cambridge University Press (2013)

  • Literature included in the reader

Course information guide:


  • Public international law BA3 2015-2016

Recommended course materials


Students have to register for courses and exams through uSis.

Contact information

  • Co-ordinator: dr. Daniëlla Dam-de Jong

  • Work address: KOG, B1.22

  • Contact information:

  • Telephone number: 071-5277944

  • Email:


  • Institute: Public Law

  • Department: Public International Law / Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies

  • Room number secretary: B1.21

  • Opening hours: 09:00-17:00

  • Telephone number secretary:

  • Email:




Belangstellenden die deze cursus in het kader van contractonderwijs willen volgen (met tentamen), kunnen meer informatie vinden over kosten, inschrijving, voorwaarden, etc. op de website van Juridisch PAO. Let op dat er wel voldaan moet worden aan de toegangseisen.