L. Oppenheim defined International law in the following words, “Law of Nation or Interna­tional Law is the name for the body of customary and conventional rules which are considered legally binding by civilized states in their relation with each other.”

Drawback of Oppenheim’s Definition:

(a) Not only states but international organizations have rights and duties under International Law.

(b) The using of word like “civilized states” also suffers from defects. In civilized states they include the Christian states only. There is no reasonable base or cause for such a disgusting differentia.


(c) Because of the widening of aspects of International Law even the individuals and other private persons may have rights and duties. International law in current scenario is putting emphasis on well being and protection of just rights of the citizens of member states.

(d) Changing ‘structure of International Law has proved that International consists not only custom-; aryl and conventional rules, but the General principle of law are also included in it. It is worth mentioning here that the General principle of law recognized by civilized states is considered as the third source of International Law by Art. 38 of the International Court of Justice.

(e) Using of words like, “body of rules” gives false impression. It pears as if International lamias bunch of static rules, we know law governs the human behaviour. Its Hard to deal with ever changing human nature and interest with a static body of rule. Even at international level, utility of law rest on practicality and implementation of law, for this law is bound to adapt itself to changing scenario. In re Piracy Jure Gentium chancellor Sankey called international law, a living and expanding code. Law is an organic phenomenon a living commitment.