The Vienna Convention on Consular Relations of 1963 is an international treaty that defines a framework for consularrelations between independent countries. A consul normally operates out of an embassy in another country, and performs two essential functions: (1) protecting in the host country the interests of their countrymen, and (2) furthering the commercial and economic relations between the two countries. While a consul is not a diplomat, they work out of the same premises, and under this treaty they are afforded most of the same privileges, including a variation of diplomatic immunity called consular immunity. The treaty has been ratified by 173 countries.
The treaty is an extensive document, containing 79 articles. Following is a basic overview of its key provisions. For a comprehensive enumeration of all articles, consult the original text.
Article 5. Thirteen functions of a consul are listed, including protecting in the receiving state the interests of the sending state and its nationals, as well as developing the commercial, economic, cultural, and scientific relations between the two countries.
Article 23. The host nation may at any time and for any reason declare a particular member of the consular staff to be persona non grata. The sending state......