ETYM Old Eng. tretee, French traité, Late Lat. tractatus; cf. Latin tractatus a handling, treatment, consultation, tractate. Related to Treat, Tractate.
A written agreement between two states or sovereigns; SYN. pact, accord.
Written agreement between two or more states. Treaties take effect either immediately on signature or, more often, on ratification. Ratification involves a further exchange of documents and usually takes place after the internal governments have approved the terms of the treaty. Treaties are binding in international law, the rules being laid down in the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties 1969.