Realization of Right for the Self-Determination of Nations as Deemed through the State Territorial Integrity PrincipleTHE

A.A. Aleksanyan

Higher school of economics
7, Malaya Ordynka st., Moscow, 119017 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Abstract: The problem of correlation of two fundamental principles of international law i. e. territorial integrity and the right to self-determination of peoples is considered to be one of the vital issues in the field of international law for several decades. In this article the author offers his approach which allows to take a fresh look at this problem. This article deals with the application of the generally accepted principles of international law to the resolution of international conflicts. The author begins his discussion with the question of the legal force which the principle of the territorial integrity of the state has over the principle of self-determination. Both of these principles are universally recognized as principles of the modern public international law. So the question of their correlation arises each time when the nation decides to exercise their right to self-determination. The essence of the principle of territorial integrity consists in prohibition to capture or in a violent manner divide the territory of another state. More over this principle is intended to protect the sovereignty of the state, which is spread over all of its territory. Many authors are of the opinion that this principle is in conflict with the right of peoples to self-determination, but the analysis of the international documents establishing these fundamental rules proves the fallacy of this conclusion. These two principles are complementary and interdependent. The author reveals the concept of Saving Clause, referring to the judicial practice.

 Keywords: the right to self-determination of peoples; the principle of territorial integrity; the principles of international law; the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict


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