Proceedings for the First Symposium on Space Economy, Space Law and Space Sciences
Space Law under International Conventions and International DocumentsVerda Neslihan Akün
This paper aims to frame the evolution and formation of the sources of international space law for the first Symposium on Space Economy, Space Sciences and Space Law of Istanbul University, held on 29-30 May 2021. The normative background of the status of outer space and activities held in space shall be shown. The legal rules governing outer space are a relatively new and junior field of Public International Law; nevertheless, the laws are formed by both customary and conventional international rules. Space law consists of all the legal rules that may apply to outer space and activities in and relating to it. The main rules of Space Law stand on five UN treaties about the activities in space. Nearly seven decades after the adoption of these rules, following a long period of stability, new challenges give rise to some issues concerning space law which are still unsolved. The dramatic shift of the actors operating in outer space and latest activities there have created the term “new space”. New Space is in a commercial phase, with significant challenges dealing with new industries such as space mining, space flights or space tourism, space debris, human settlement on other outer space objects, etc. In this phase, potential risks relating to technological accidents and security problems regarding liability and responsibility issues are unknown. Future legal norms which shall address these issues shall not be disregarded by the dynamic nature of space law.