The Secretary-General of the United Nations is the custodian of more than 560 multilateral treaties covering a wide range of issues such as human rights, disarmament and environmental protection. However, a breach of contract does not automatically suspend or terminate contractual relationships. It depends on how the other parties view the offence and how they decide to react. Sometimes contracts provide for the seriousness of an offence determined by a court or other independent arbitrator.  Such an arbitrator has the advantage of preventing one party from suspending or terminating its own obligations because of an alleged substantial breach of another. In international law and international relations, a protocol is usually an international treaty or agreement that complements an earlier treaty or international agreement. A protocol may modify the previous contract or add additional provisions. The parties to the previous agreement are not required to adopt the protocol. This sometimes becomes more evident by calling it an “optional protocol,” especially if many parties to the first agreement do not support the protocol.
The Vienna Convention on Treaty Law (.pdf) defines a treaty as “an international agreement concluded in writing between states and governed by international law, whether it appears in a single act or in two or more related acts, regardless of its particular name.” If a contract does not contain provisions for other agreements or measures, only the text of the treaty is legally binding. In general, an amendment to the Treaty only commits the States that have ratified it and the agreements reached at review conferences, summits or meetings of the States Parties are not legally binding. The Charter of the United Nations is an example of a treaty that contains provisions for other binding agreements. By signing and ratifying the Charter, countries have agreed to be legally bound by resolutions adopted by UN bodies such as the General Assembly and the Security Council. Therefore, UN resolutions are legally binding on UN member states and no signature or ratification is required. Under international law, a treaty is a legally binding agreement between states (countries).