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State Succession Kevin Iraniha. State Succession Definition – Brownlee: Replacement of one state by another in respect of sovereignty over the territory.

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Presentation on theme: "State Succession Kevin Iraniha. State Succession Definition – Brownlee: Replacement of one state by another in respect of sovereignty over the territory."— Presentation transcript:

1 State Succession Kevin Iraniha

2 State Succession Definition – Brownlee: Replacement of one state by another in respect of sovereignty over the territory – Vienna Convention: “succession of States” means the replacement of one State by another in the responsibility for the international relations of territory Sources: – Convention: Vienna Convention on Succession of States in Respect of Treaties (1978), effective 1996 – Customary International Law

3 State Succession Problems: – Is successor state bound by all or any treaties of the predecessor? – Do the people automatically become nationals of the successor state? – Is the successor state affected by claims or debts of predecessors? – What happens to public and private property? 2 differing principles: – Roman Law (Continuation) – New state continues the legal personality of the predecessor – ‘Clean Slate’ principle – New state acquires sovereignty free from encumbrances created by the predecessor state Much depends on circumstances of the particular case as to if it will be a continuation or a ‘clean slate’ state

4 State Succession How? – Dismemberment of existing state Soviet Union to Russian Federation (continuation) Yugoslavia into Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro, Serbia, Kosovo, Macedonia = new independent states (Clean-slate) – Secession – withdrawing from a territory Belgium (1830) from Netherlands Bangladesh from Pakistan – Decolonization India – remained same legal entity as British India (Continuation) Pakistan – became a totally new state (‘clean slate’) – Merger of existing States Yemen Arab Republic and People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen – Merged and became the Republic of Yemen (new State) German Democratic Republic (GDR) and Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) – Merged and remained the FRG (Continuation) – Partial cession or annexation of territory Hawaii

5 Yugoslavia Dismemberment

6 State Succession State Property – Generally accepted to be ceded to the successor along with territory and sovereignty, unless cultural heritage or similar cases Public Law Claims – Generally accepted that successor state has a right to take up fiscal claims belonging to former state – Example: Collecting Taxes Public Debt – More controversial – Continuation = successor should assume public debts – ‘clean slate’ = sometimes remains with predecessor state, sometimes taken up by the successor state. State Contracts (Treaties, etc.) – Article 16 states that newly independent states (decolonized states) receive a "clean slate", whereas article 34(1) states that all other new states remain bound by the treaty obligations of the state from which they separated.

7 State Succession Nationality – Population follows the change of sovereignty – Treaty of Peace with Italy (1947) Inhabitants of territory will become citizens of transferee with a right of option given – Minorities Treaty signed at Versailles: Poland admits and declares to be Polish Nationals ‘ipso facto.’ New nationals can declare abandonment of Polish nationality within 2 yrs. – U.N. Charter Change of Sovereignty doesn’t give new sovereign the right to dispose of the population – Human Rights Perspective To prevent Stateless peoples, nationality shall be given by new sovereign Problems to address by government of Successor State: – Alien residents in territory – Born abroad of parents who are nationals of former regime – Dual nationality with former regime

8 State Succession Other Provisions Even if a ‘clean slate’ state, they are still bound by ‘General International Law – Like Convention on the High Seas Must conform to Boundary Treaties, even if treaty ceases to exist Must conform with existing principles of Jus Cogens


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