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date: 28 February 2021

Abstract and Keywords

The phenomenon of governance in areas of limited statehood has had a particularly strong impact on the development of international law after 1990. If—on a large scale—states lack the capacity to control the means of violence and to implement and enforce central decisions it is most likely that this bears serious consequences for the international legal order. The chapter inquires into these consequences and analyses the changing discourses about statehood. As a response to the phenomenon of limited statehood, the international community had to address the challenge how and to what extent external actors could step in in order to perform government functions. This triggered debates about the legal basis and about the legal limits for such activities. While the period after 1990 was characterized by approaches which relativized the sovereignty of fragile states, more recent developments point to a re-emphasis of state consent

Keywords: international law, failed states, common but differentiated responsibility, state sovereignty, R2P, intervention by invitation, armed groups

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