Author: Christian Walter,Antje von Ungern-Sternberg,Kavus Abushov
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
Peoples and minorities in many parts of the world assert a right to self-determination, autonomy, and even secession from a state, which naturally conflicts with that state's sovereignty and territorial integrity. The right of a people to self-determination and secession has existed as a concept within international law since the American Declaration of Independence in 1776, but the exact definition of these concepts, and the conditions required for their application, remain unclear. The Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice concerning the Declaration of Independency of Kosovo (2010), which held that the Kosovo declaration of independence was not in violation of international law, has only led to further questions. This book takes four conflicts in the post-Soviet Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) as a starting point for examining the current state of the law of self-determination and secession. Four entities, Transnistria (Moldova), South Ossetia, Abkhazia (both Georgia), and Nagorno-Karabakh (Armenia), claim to be entitled not only to self-determination but also to secession from their mother state. For this entitlement they rely on historic affiliations, and on charges of discrimination and massive human rights violations committed by their mother state. This book sets out its analysis of these critical issue in three parts, providing a detailed understanding of the principles of international law on which they rely: The first part sets out the contours and meaning of self-determination and secession, including an overall assessment of secession within the Commonwealth of Independent States. The second section provides case studies investigating the events in Transnistria, South Ossetia, Abkhazia, and Nagorno-Karabach in greater detail. The third and final section extends the scope of the examination, providing a comparative analysis of similar conflicts involving questions of self-determination and secession in Kosovo, Western Sahara, and Eritrea.
This book addresses questions in connection with the international legal regime on demands for secession, which have arisen in various States. More specifically, it examines the unilateral declarations of independence by Kosovo in 2008, and by Crimea and its subsequent annexation by the Russian Federation in 2014. The work investigates the two cases so as to shed light on the international legal regime affecting entities that are smaller than a sovereign State. It analyzes the relevant principles of international law, the intention being to determine their scope and review them in light of the most recent practice and developments in international law. In turn, the book examines and explains the events of relevance for international law that occurred in the changing situations in Kosovo and Crimea. On the basis of these legal considerations, it explores how the international community can respond when faced with situations that may violate international law, together with the effectiveness of various measures. It also discusses whether certain situations might be legitimate as a concept could now be emerging that secession may be justified in specific circumstances, such as serious and widespread violations of basic human rights.
This book provides a unique comparative study of the major secessionist and self-determination movements in post-colonial Africa, examining theory, international law, charters of the United Nations, and the Organisation of African Unity (OAU)/African Union’s (AU) stance on the issue. The book explores whether self-determination and secessionism lead to peace, stability, development and democratisation in conflict-ridden societies, particularly looking at the outcomes in Eritrea and South Sudan. The book covers all the major attempts at self-determination and secession on the continent, extensively analysing the geo-political, economic, security and ideological factors that determine the outcome of the quest for self-determination and secession. It reveals the lack of inherent clarity in international law, social science theories, OAU/AU Charter, UN Charters and international conventions concerning the topic. This is a major contribution to the field and highly relevant for researchers and postgraduate students in African Studies, Development Studies, African Politics and History, and Anthropology.
The case of Quebec within Canada, and the Supreme Court of Canada's case on the legality of secessionist attempts by Quebec, is one example of the tension associated with the relationship between self-determination and a right of secession. The object of the book is to render available to the international community the expert opinions and legal arguments associated with the Supreme Court of Canada's decision on the "Quebec Secession Reference." The questions put to the Court in large part concerned international law, leading the parties to the Reference to seek opinions from international law experts around the world as they prepared their arguments which are presented in this book. Self-determination is an idea rooted in human dignity and its meaning and force parallel the emergence of new understandings of the nature of sovereignty and the role of international law in the protection of human rights. The UN Human Rights Committee has identified self-determination as one of the most awkward principles to define because abuse of this right could jeopardize international peace and security. Self-determination, as formulated by the International Court of Justice, requires a free and genuine expression of the will of the peoples concerned. But serious questions remain about the extent of the relationship between self-determination and a right of secession. Does self-determination legitimate internal self-government, association of some kind with another state, or statehood, and in what contexts?
"selfistans", Secession and the Rule of the Great Powers
Author: Milena Sterio
This book proposes a novel theory of self-determination; the Rule of the Great Powers. This book argues that traditional legal norms on self-determination have failed to explain and account for recent results of secessionist self-determination struggles. While secessionist groups like the East Timorese, the Kosovar Albanians and the South Sudanese have been successful in their quests for independent statehood, other similarly situated groups have been relegated to an at times violent existence within their mother states. Thus, Chechens still live without significant autonomy within Russia, and the South Ossetians and the Abkhaz have seen their conflicts frozen because of the peculiar geo-political equilibrium of power within the Caucuses region. The Rule of the Great Powers, which asserts that only those self-determination seeking entities which enjoy the support of the majority of the most powerful states (the Great Powers) will ultimately have their rights to self-determination fulfilled. The Great Powers, potent military, economic and political powerhouses such as the United States, China, Russia, Japan, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, and Italy, often dictate self-determination outcomes through their influence in global affairs. Issues of self-determination in the modern world can no longer be effectively resolved through the application of traditional legal rules; rather, resort must be had to novel theories, such as the Rule of the Great Powers. This book will be of particular interest to academics and students of law, political science and international relations.
This text is part of a series which aims to bring together articles in international law. The text presents an informative introduction which provides an overview of the subject matter and justification of why the articles were collected.
The emergence of new states and independence movements after the Cold War has intensified the long-standing disagreement among international lawyers over the right of self-determination, especially the right of secession. Knop shifts the discussion from the articulation of the right to its interpretation. She argues that the practice of interpretation involves and illuminates a problem of diversity raised by the exclusion of many of the groups that self-determination most affects. Distinguishing different types of exclusion and the relationships between them reveals the deep structures, biases and stakes in the decisions and scholarship on self-determination. Knop's analysis also reveals that the leading cases have grappled with these embedded inequalities. Challenges by colonies, ethnic nations, indigenous peoples, women and others to the gender and cultural biases of international law emerge as integral to the interpretation of self-determination historically, as do attempts by judges and other institutional interpreters to meet these challenges.
Although most international lawyers assumed that the distribution of the land surface of the earth between States was more or less final after the end of decolonization, recent practice has disproved this assumption. Eritrea separated from Ethiopia and new States were created out of the former Soviet Union, the former Yugoslavia and the former Czechoslovakia. There is no reason to believe that these events form the end of the creation of new States. Numerous communities within existing States claim a right to full separate statehood on the basis of their entitlement to an alleged right to self-determination. However, in most cases, the international community rejected such claims to statehood, even if the territorial entity satisfied the traditional criteria for statehood. On the other hand, in other cases, including some of those mentioned above, the international community acknowledged the statehood of entities which clearly failed to meet these criteria. In the light of the above-mentioned developments, this book examines the modern law of statehood, and in particular the role of the law of self-determination in the process of the formation of States in international law. The study shows that the law of statehood has changed considerably since the establishment of the United Nations. It is argued that the law of self-determination is particularly relevant for explaining the international community's position regarding the general recognition, or the general denial, of statehood of different territorial entities under contemporary international law.
Die Idee eines Selbstbestimmungsrechts der Völker besagt, dass Völker das Recht haben, einen Staat zu bilden, und selbst darüber entscheiden können, ob sie dieses Recht wahrnehmen oder nicht. Die erste Gesamtdarstellung seiner Geschichte zeigt, wie es den Totengräber für die europäischen Kolonialreiche und andere Imperien gespielt hat und seit 1989 auf der Suche nach neuen Betätigungsfeldern ist. Entstanden aus dem Nationalismus und dem Antikolonialismus, erhebt das Selbstbestimmungsrecht der Völker den Anspruch, die internationalen Beziehungen auf eine herrschaftsfreie Grundlage zu stellen. Sprengstoff beinhaltet vor allem das damit verbundene Sezessionsrecht. Denn wer bestimmt, was ein Volk ist? Die Idee kollidiert hier schnell mit den machtpolitischen Realitäten und erweist sich als eine gefährliche, zum Missbrauch geradezu einladende Illusion, mit deren Domestizierung das Völkerrecht bis heute beschäftigt ist. Denn nicht nur Adolf Hitler verstand es meisterhaft, das Konzept für seine Zwecke zu instrumentalisieren. In einer souveränen Kombination von Begriffs-, Politik- und Kulturgeschichte durchmisst Jörg Fisch die Weltgeschichte und liefert eine anschaulich und prägnant geschriebene Darstellung dieser vom 19. Jahrhundert bis in die Gegenwart äußerst wirkmächtigen Idee.
This publication has been prepared under the auspices of the Consortium on International Dispute Resolution (CIDIR) and based on the discussions of regional conferences held in Geneva, Moscow, Sydney, California and the Hague during the period 2000-01. It explores the principles and rules of international law regarding the fragmentation of states and growth of secessionist movements, with the aim of conflict prevention. It focuses on the issues of sovereignty, self defence, self determination and humanitarian law; and aspects considered include fundamental legal concepts and evolving principles, as well as case studies of self-determination and secessionist movements in Quebec, Canada; Puerto Rico; and Latin America.
"Modern Law of Self-Determination" examines the significance of the right to self-determination in the new world order. For decades, self-determination was seen as a right of colonial peoples. Now the decolonization process has come to an end, its scope and meaning need to be re-examined. Increasingly, the ethnic groups within established nation States claim some separate political status. In extreme cases of persecution of an ethnic group by a ruling majority, secession may provide the only viable remedy to resolve the conflict. However, international law cannot promote a general Balkanization' of the globe. The legitimate interests of all ethnic groups should be accommodated within the framework of existing States. Self-determination, which today is predominantly understood as implying a right to independent statehood, may have to be re-interpreted as conferring no more than a right to autonomy or federal statehood. Such a conception is in line with a modern tendency that highlights the necessary internal dimension of self-determination. "Modern Law of Self-Determination" is based on papers delivered at a conference in Bonn in August 1992 which have been updated and reviewed by the authors in light of the discussions following their presentation.
How Nationalism and Self-Determination Shape a Contemporary Law of Nations
Author: James Summers
Publisher: Martinus Nijhoff Publishers
Peoples and International Law is the most comprehensive current account of the right of self-determination in international law. The book examines the law of self-determination as the product of the interaction between nationalism and international law. This broad and interdisciplinary work charts this interaction through different aspects of the legal process – in international instruments, judicial decisions, legal obligations and historical context – critically and in extensive detail. The book is essential reading for those with an interest both in peoples’ rights in international law and the study of nationalism.
The end of the Cold War brought about new secessionist aspirations and the strengthening and re-awakening of existing or dormant separatist claims everywhere. The creation of a new independent entity through the separation of part of the territory and population of an existing State raises serious difficulties as to the role of international law. This 2006 book offers a comprehensive study of secession from an international law perspective, focusing on practice and applicable rules of international law. It includes theoretical analyses and a scrutiny of practice throughout the world by eighteen distinguished authors from Western and Eastern Europe, North and Sub-Saharan Africa, North and Latin America, and Asia. Core questions are addressed from different perspectives, and in some cases with divergent views. The reader is also exposed to a far-reaching picture of State practice, including some cases which are rarely mentioned and often neglected in scholarly analysis of secession.
This book articulates a systematic vision of an international legal system grounded in the commitment to justice for all persons. It provides a probing exploration of the moral issues involved in disputes about secession, ethno-national conflict, 'the right of self-determination of peoples,' human rights, and the legitimacy of the international legal system itself. Buchanan advances vigorous criticisms of the central dogmas of international relations and international law, arguing that the international legal system should make justice, not simply peace, among states a primary goal, and rejecting the view that it is permissible for a state to conduct its foreign policies exclusively according to what is in the 'the national interest'. He also shows that the only alternatives are not rigid adherence to existing international law or lawless chaos in which the world's one superpower pursues its own interests without constraints. This book not only criticizes the existing international legal order, but also offers morally defensible and practicable principles for reforming it. Justice, Legitimacy, and Self-Determination will find a broad readership in political science, international law, and political philosophy. Oxford Political Theory presents the best new work in political theory. It is intended to be broad in scope, including original contributions to political philosophy and also work in applied political theory. The series contains works of outstanding quality with no restrictions as to approach or subject matter. Series Editors: Will Kymlicka, David Miller, and Alan Ryan
The Right to Self-Determination in the South Caucasus: Nagorno Karabakh in Context, by Bahruz Balayev, is a unique tool for scholars, researchers and public on understanding South Caucasus regional conflicts from the New Heaven School perspective. Balayev explores important subjects in the South Caucasus region, including Soviet self-determination psychology and laws, ideas of consociational democracy, and the right to self-determination in general.
Grundlagen und Rechtsfolgen einer international koordinierten Sanktion, dargestellt am Beispiel der Türkischen Republik Nord-Zypern
Author: Stefan Talmon
Publisher: Mohr Siebeck
English summary: The question of the legal effect of the recognition of new entities that call themselves 'states' has been characterized for over a century by the intense debate between the constitutive and the declaratory schools of thought. An examination of the American, British and German state practice in the case of the internationally non-recognized Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus however shows that none of the two theories can satisfactorily explain the non-recognition as a state of an entity that meets all the international legal criteria for statehood but that has been created in violation of a fundamental norm of international law. Non-recognition of an existing state can neither have status-preventing nor status-confirming effect, it can only have status-denying, i.e. negatory, effect. Collective non-recognition has been employed by the international community since the 1930s as a sanction against serious breaches of fundamental norms of international law affecting the international community as a whole. Initially coordinated by the League of Nations it is now administered by the United Nations. Non-recognition as a state means that other states do not just withhold all optional or discretionary relations and the resulting rights and privileges from an 'illegal state' but that they deny it all the rights, powers and privileges inherent in statehood. German description: Mehr als 100 Jahre war die Debatte uber die Wirkung der Anerkennung von Staaten gepragt von der Auseinandersetzung zwischen der deklaratorischen und der konstitutiven Theorie. Am Beispiel der international nicht anerkannten Turkischen Republik Nord-Zypern zeigt Stefan Talmon, dass keine der beiden Theorien die Nichtanerkennung von Wirkungseinheiten erklaren kann, die die Staatskriterien erfullen, aber unter Verstoss gegen das Volkerrecht entstanden sind. Der Nichtanerkennung eines bestehenden Staates kommt weder statusverhindernde noch statusbestatigende, sondern statusverneinende, d.h. negatorische Wirkung zu. Bei der kollektiven Nichtanerkennung handelt es sich um eine von der Staatengemeinschaft seit den 30er Jahren des 20. Jahrhunderts eingesetzte Sanktion gegen schwerwiegende, die wesentlichen Interessen der Staatengemeinschaft als Ganzes verletzende Volkerrechtsverstosse. Bei der vom Volkerbund bzw. von den Vereinten Nationen koordinierten Nichtanerkennung werden dem 'illegalen Staat' nicht nur die optionalen zwischenstaatlichen Beziehungen und die sich der daraus ergebenden Rechte und Privilegien, sondern auch die zwingenden Grundrechte eines Staates (d.h. alle aus der Staatsqualitat resultierenden Rechte, Kompetenzen und Privilegien) vorenthalten.