Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space, including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies

General Detail

General Information

  1. Type: Convention
  2. Date of signature:
  3. Place of signature: London, United Kingdom
  4. Depositary:
  5. Date of entry into force: 10/10/1967

Category

Transport and telecommunications

Sub category

Space

Groups

What is it about?

From the beginning of the space age, deliberate efforts to create a coherent body of law for outer space and space activities were undertaken at the United Nations. The General Assembly adopted three UN Resolutions stating general rules on the law of outer space: - Resolution 1962 on the declaration of legal principles governing the activities of States in the exploration and use of outer space (13 December 1963); - Resolution 1884 calling upon States from placing in orbit around the earth any objects carrying nuclear weapons or any other kind of weapons of mass destruction or from installing such weapons on celestial bodies (17 October 1963); - Resolution 110 condemning propaganda designed or likely to provoke or encourage any threat to the peace, breach of the peace or act of aggression (3 November 1947). The conclusion of multilateral treaties has become the principal means of enacting pertinent legal rules. Considering the fundamental statements of the Resolutions and desiring to contribute to the development of mutual understanding and to the strengthening of friendly relations between States and peoples, the Treaty governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space, Including the Moon and other Celestial Bodies (Outer Space Treaty) affirms the freedom of exploration and use of outer space and prohibits all claims of sovereignty. It also proscribes the establishment of military bases, installations or fortifications on celestial bodies and the placement in orbit around the earth of objects carrying weapons of mass destruction. It constitutes a legal hindrance to the installation of nuclear explosives in space. Carriage of weapons through space and exploration by artificial satellites remain authorized.

Why is it relevant?

The Outer Space Treaty provides the basis for all subsequent treaties and other legal instruments relating to space activities. The exploration and use of outer space is a global problem affecting the entire international community. Recognizes this fact, the Treaty stresses "the common interest of all mankind" in the exploration and use of outer space for peaceful purposes. This provision provides sufficient legal grounds for claims to full and effective participation by all members of the internationalcommunity in the decision-making process relating to outer space. Consequently real progress in the development of legal norms applicable to the use and exploration of outer space can only be made when as many states as possible, including all states having the capability to engage in outer space activities, are actively in agreement.

Additional Information

The present instrument does not contain provisions to ensure its enforcement, but foresees a consultation procedure while a State Party assumes that the activities of another State Party may cause a negative impact on the peaceful exploration and use of space.

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Country ratifications
CountryRatification date
Afghanistan17/03/1988
Algeria27/01/1992
Antigua and Barbuda26/01/1989
Argentina26/03/1969
Australia10/10/1967
Austria26/02/1968
Bahamas11/08/1976
Bangladesh14/01/1986
Barbados09/12/1968
Belarus31/10/1967
Belgium31/03/1973
Benin02/07/1986
Brazil05/03/1969
Bulgaria19/04/1967
Burkina Faso18/06/1968
Canada10/10/1967
Chile08/10/1981
China12/01/1984
Cuba03/06/1977
Cyprus05/07/1972
Czech Republic11/05/1967
Denmark10/10/1967
Dominican Republic21/11/1968
Ecuador07/03/1969
Egypt23/01/1968
El Salvador15/01/1969
Equatorial Guinea16/01/1989
Fiji14/08/1972
Finland12/07/1967
France05/08/1970
Germany10/02/1971
Greece19/01/1971
Guinea-Bissau20/08/1976
Hungary26/06/1967
Iceland05/02/1968
India18/01/1982
Indonesia25/06/2002
Iraq23/09/1969
Ireland19/07/1968
Israel01/03/1977
Italy04/05/1972
Jamaica10/08/1970
Japan10/10/1967
Kazakhstan11/06/1998
Kenya19/01/1984
Kuwait20/06/1972
Lao People's Democratic Republic15/01/1973
Lebanon31/03/1969
Libyan Arab Jamahiriya03/07/1968
Madagascar22/08/1968
Mali11/06/1968
Mauritius21/04/1969
Mexico31/01/1968
Mongolia10/10/1967
Morocco21/12/1967
Myanmar18/03/1970
Nepal10/10/1967
Netherlands31/05/1968
New Zealand10/10/1969
Niger17/04/1967
Nigeria14/11/1967
Norway01/07/1969
Pakistan08/04/1968
Papua New Guinea27/10/1980
Peru28/02/1979
Poland30/01/1968
Portugal29/05/1996
Republic of Korea13/10/1967
Romania09/04/1968
Russian Federation10/10/1967
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines13/05/1999
San Marino03/02/1969
Saudi Arabia17/12/1976
Seychelles05/01/1978
Sierra Leone25/10/1967
Singapore10/09/1976
Slovakia17/05/1980
South Africa30/09/1968
Spain27/11/1968
Sri Lanka18/11/1986
Sweden11/10/1967
Switzerland18/12/1969
Syrian Arab Republic19/11/1968
Thailand05/09/1968
Togo26/06/1989
Tonga07/07/1971
Tunisia28/03/1968
Turkey27/03/1968
Uganda24/04/1968
Ukraine31/10/1967
United Arab Emirates04/10/2000
United Kingdom10/10/1967
United States of America10/10/1967
Uruguay31/08/1970
Venezuela03/03/1970
Viet Nam20/06/1980
Yemen01/06/1979
Zambia28/08/1973
Treaties analysis
YearRatifications
196722
196822
196911
19705
19713
19724
19733
19764
19772
19781
19792
19803
19811
19821
19844
19863
19881
19893
19921
19961
19981
19991
20001
20021
Total101
Map
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