international law


Definition of international law 

: a body of rules that control or affect the rights of nations in their relations with each other

Examples of international law in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

If there are no federal statutes against private ownership of materials from space, other experts say international law may provide some guidance. Denise Chow /, NBC News, "Woman says Neil Armstrong gave her moon dust. She's suing NASA to keep it.," 14 June 2018 Advocates counter that international law guarantees the rights of people fleeing persecution to seek asylum, and there's nothing frivolous about it. Catherine E. Shoichet, CNN, "How one month reshaped the US immigration landscape," 3 June 2018 What Trump taught the Iranian youth is that international law is meaningless, what matters is power, power and power. Time, "'The Americans Cannot Be Trusted.' How Iran Is Reacting to Trump's Decision to Quit Nuclear Deal," 9 May 2018 Due to the complex nature of international law, and that many migratory birds often cross international borders, these laws were put in place to stymie over-hunting. Jordyn Hermani, Indianapolis Star, "Black vultures are eating cows alive. But it's difficult to legally kill the birds.," 13 July 2018 The peer-to-peer on-site training program is a joint effort between the Georgia State's Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, as well as local, state, federal and international law-enforcement agencies. Eliana Rudee, Jewish Journal, "U.S. senior police and public-safety officials boost skills in Israel," 10 July 2018 By American and international law, a person must be allowed to make an asylum claim after stepping on U.S. soil. NBC News, "In South Texas, Trump immigration policies cut into the fabric of border culture," 7 July 2018 Kadar's arrest in March 2017 followed a trans-Atlantic investigation with the FBI and other international law enforcement agencies. Josef Federman,, "Hacker whose bomb threats sparked fears of anti-Semitism rise in U.S. convicted in Israel," 28 June 2018 The United States has long upheld international law. CBS News, "Trump makes misleading claims about Crimea, FBI, North Korea," 15 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'international law.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of international law

1789, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

16 Oct 2018

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The first known use of international law was in 1789

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international law


Legal Definition of international law 

: a body of laws, rules, or legal principles that are based on custom, treaties, or legislation and that control or affect the rights and duties of nations in relation to each other — compare internal law

More from Merriam-Webster on international law Encyclopedia article about international law

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What made you want to look up international law? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


to reject or criticize sharply

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