The General Assembly of the United Nations, by resolution 1685 (XVI) of 18 December 1961, decided to convene an international conference of plenipotentiaries to consider the question of consular relations and to embody the results of its work in an international convention and such other instruments as it might deem appropriate. The General Assembly, accepting an invitation extended by the Federal Government of the Republic of Austria, also asked the Secretary-General to convoke the conference at Vienna at the beginning of March 1963.
The United Nations Conference on Consular Relations met at the Neue Hofburg in Vienna, Austria, from 4 March to 22 April 1963.
The Governments of the following ninety-two States were represented at the Conference: Albania, Algeria, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Burundi, Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic, Cambodia, Canada, Ceylon, Chad, Chile, China, Colombia, Congo (Brazzaville), Congo (Leopoldville), Costa Rica, Cuba, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Ethiopia, Federal Republic of Germany, Federation of Malaya, Finland, France, Ghana, Greece, Guinea, Holy See, Honduras, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait, Laos, Lebanon, Liberia, Libya, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Madagascar, Mali, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Panama, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Republic of Korea, Republic of Viet-Nam, Romania, Rwanda, San Marino, Saudi Arabia, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, United Arab Republic, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, United States of America, Upper Volta, Uruguay, Venezuela, Yugoslavia.
The Governments of Bolivia, Guatemala and Paraguay were represented at the Conference by observers.
The General Assembly invited the specialized agencies and interested intergovernmental organizations to send observers to the Conference. The following specialized agencies and interested intergovernmental organizations accepted this invitation:
International Labour Organisation,
Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations,
International Atomic Energy Agency,
Council of Europe.
The Conference elected Mr. Stephan Verosta (Austria) as President.
The Conference elected as Vice-Presidents the representatives of the following States: Algeria, Argentina, Canada, Ceylon, China, Colombia, Czechoslovakia, France, Indonesia, Italy, Mexico, Romania, Thailand, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, the United States of America, Upper Volta, Yugoslavia.
The following committees were set up by the Conference:
The President of the Conference
The President of the Conference, the Vice-Presidents, and the Chairmen of the First and Second Committees.
First Committee Chairman:
Mr. Nathan Barnes (Liberia)
First Vice-Chair man:
Mr. Pedro Silveira-Barrios (Venezuela)
Mr. Jerzy Osiecki (Poland)
Mr. Zenon P. Westrup (Sweden)
Second Committee Chairman:
Mr. Mario Gibson Alves Barboza (Brazil)
Mr. Hassan Kamel (United Arab Republic)
Mr. A. J. Vranken (Belgium)
Mr. Borislav Konstantinov (Bulgaria)
Drafting Committee Chairman:
Mr. K. Krishna Rao (India)
Mr. José Maria Ruda (Argentina), Mr. Geraldo Eulalio do Nascimento e Silva (Brazil), Mr. Nan-ju Wu (China), Mr. Bernard de Menthon (France), Mr. Emmanuel Kodjo Dadzie (Ghana), Mr. Endre Ustor (Hungary), Mr. José S. de Erice (Spain), Mr. Rudolf L. Bindschedler (Switzerland), Mr. Oleg Khlestov (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics), Mr. W. V. J. Evans (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland), Mr. Warde M. Cameron (United States of America).
Credentials Committee Chairman:
Mr. Gilles Sicotte (Canada)
Canada, El Salvador, Greece, Guinea, Indonesia, Mexico, Nigeria, Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, United States of America.
The Secretary-General of the United Nations was represented by Mr. C. A. Stavropoulos, the Legal Counsel. Mr. Yuen-li Liang, Director of the Codification Division of the Office of Legal Affairs of the United Nations, acted as Executive Secretary. Mr. J. Zourek, Special Rapporteur of the International Law Commission on the subject of consular relations, acted as expert.
The General Assembly, by its resolution 1685 (XVI) convening the Conference, referred to the Conference, as the basis for its consideration of the question of consular relations, chapter II of the report of the International Law Commission covering the work of its thirteenth session, containing the text of draft articles on consular relations and commentaries adopted by the Commission at that session.
The Conference also had before it the following documentation:
(a) observations submitted by governments during successive stages of the work of the International Law Commission on consular relations;
(b) the records of the relevant debates in the General Assembly;
(c) amendments submitted by governments in advance of the convening of the Conference, pursuant to General Assembly resolution 1813 (XVII) of 21 December 1962, to the draft articles on consular relations;
(d) the text of the Convention regarding Consular Agents adopted by the Sixth International American Conference and signed at Havana on 20 February 1928;
(e) a collection of bilateral consular treaties, a collection of laws and regulations regarding diplomatic and consular privileges and immunities, a bibliography on consular relations, a guide to the draft articles on consular relations, and other pertinent documentation prepared by the Secretariat of the United Nations.
The Conference initially allocated the consideration of the draft articles on consular relations adopted by the International Law Commission and the preparation of the preamble, final provisions, final act and any protocols it might consider necessary in the course of its work, to the First and Second Committees as follows:
Subsequently, the Conference re-allocated draft articles 52 to 55 from the Second to the First Committee. The Conference also initially allocated draft article 1 to the Drafting Committee, for report direct to the Conference but, subsequently, the Conference decided that the Drafting Committee should report on that draft article to the Conference through the First Committee.
On the basis of the deliberations, as recorded in the records of the plenary meetings and in the records and reports of the First and Second Committees, the Conference prepared the following Convention and Protocols:
The foregoing Convention and Protocols, which are subject to ratification, were adopted by the Conference on 22 April 1963, and opened for signature on 24 April 1963, in accordance with their provisions, until 31 October 1963 at the Federal Ministry for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Austria and, subsequently, until 31 March 1964, at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. The same instruments were also opened for accession, in accordance with their provisions.
After the closing date for signature at the Federal Ministry for Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Austria on 31 October 1963, the Convention and Protocols will be deposited with the Secretary-General of the United Nations.
In addition, the Conference adopted the following resolutions, which are annexed to this Final Act: