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Archives for September 1995

International Treaties: Their Impact On Australia

This is the full text of a Keynote Address by Senator the Hon Gareth Evans QC, Minister for Foreign Affairs, to the International Treaties Conference, Canberra, 4 September 1995.

Speech by Gareth Evans to the International Treaties Conference.

EvansThis conference on international treaties is certainly timely. Australia’s involvement in treaty making is currently being examined in a number of forums; there is now a Senate Committee looking at the operation of the external affairs power in the Constitution; and there is legislation currently before the Parliament dealing with the effect of treaties on administrative decision making. I think there can be no doubt that treaties do have an important and developing influence on many aspects of Australian society and I want to examine their impact in a little detail. But first I think it would be useful to spend a few moments in considering what treaties actually are, and perhaps more importantly, what they are not. I feel constrained to do so because of the misinformation, some of it quite deliberately spread, which has clouded the whole issue of treaty-making over the last couple of years. [Read more…]