Subjects of international law are entities that have legal personality and are capable of exercising certain rights, privileges, and duties under the international legal system. Subjects of international law are entities that have legal personality and are considered necessary of the system and capable of enforcing claims. The subject of international law refers to the person or entity to whom international law applies.

State: Because duties flow from the state, the state is the basic topic of international law. Since time immemorial, the state has been considered a subject of international law. This is due to the fact that it is the state that is recognized worldwide, and it is held accountable for the actions of its citizens as well as its own. It is the obligation and power of the state to conclude relations with the international front.

International Agencies: They are a secondary topic in international law. An international organization is defined as one that is founded by a treaty or instrument, governed by international law rules, and has its own international legal personality. Prior to World War One, it was seen that periodic conferences had a significant influence on global politics, resulting in a delay in addressing critical concerns. Following WWI, the United Nations aided in the formation of international organizations. At the time of this development, some legal issues were raised, such as whether or not an organization possesses an international personality. The answer was yes, and it is a subject matter of international law because it is capable of possessing international rights and duties, which can be maintained only when it has the right to bring an international claim. It was also stated that when an international claim enters the picture, it cannot be contested with the requirements of the state’s municipal laws.

Individuals: Individuals have become a prominent issue of international law as a result of modern changes because international law recognizes an individual’s fundamental rights. Following the adoption of the UN Charter and other treaties, it has been acknowledged that an individual’s right to constitute renders him a person subject to international law. Individuals are considered to have legal personality in international law in a restricted sense since they have rights, obligations, and the ability to pursue their international claims with specific limitations.

An individual, for example, has the right not to be tortured. In the official case of the Denzg Railway (1928), the facts were that Poland bought the Denzg railway company, which was created in another state, through a treaty and promised specific amenities but failed to fulfill them. As a result, officials filed a complaint with the PCIJ against Poland. Individuals, they argued, are subject to international law.

Non-State Entities: These are entities that have not been registered as independent states and do not have the same legal standing as states. Despite the fact that they have not been registered as independent states, non-state entities have the ability to participate in international conventions and treaties. Non-State entities, however, differ from states in that their rights and duties are not the same as those of the state, and their functions and power are likewise limited in comparison to those of the state. Non-State entities exist for a specific purpose, which is considered while limiting Non-State entities’ rights and duties.


Despite the fact that the individual’s position is not similar to that of states, non-state entities or international organizations, the individual is said to have limited international legal personality for the following reasons:

  • In international law, individuals have rights.
  • Individuals are subject to duties and obligations under international law.
  • Individuals have limited procedural options for enforcing their foreign claims.

Individuals are increasingly becoming a focus of international law, with several treaties focused explicitly at improving their status. However, there is still a significant gap until international law explicitly confers rights on individuals without necessarily functioning via the channel and under the cover of the state.

Aishwarya Says:

I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.

If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.

Do follow me on FacebookTwitter  Youtube and Instagram.

The copyright of this Article belongs exclusively to Ms. Aishwarya Sandeep. Reproduction of the same, without permission will amount to Copyright Infringement. Appropriate Legal Action under the Indian Laws will be taken.

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We also have a Facebook Group Restarter Moms for Mothers or Women who would like to rejoin their careers post a career break or women who are enterpreneurs.

We are also running a series Inspirational Women from January 2021 to March 31,2021, featuring around 1000 stories about Indian Women, who changed the world. #choosetochallenge

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