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States, Ngos And Humanitarian Intervention

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Chapter Summary

This chapter argues that what controls the possible re-emergence of the humanitarian intervention norm after the end of the Cold War are both international and especially domestic political factors inspiring and legitimating humanitarian intervention into foreign internal wars. There has been a vigorous arid extensive debate from both a legal and policy perspective on the desirability of humanitarian intervention. As the chapter's focus is on the role of international civil society in affecting this norm since the 1990s, we need only summarize this debate by two important exponents. The chapter discusses three cases of humanitarian intervention that may set legal precedents favoring forcible human rights protection over state sovereignty, depending on how states come to interpret the legality of this regime. Despite their being only partly successful and only partly motivated by altruism, are nevertheless unplecedented examples of collective security to save lives.

Keywords: cold war; humanitarian intervention norm; natural law; NGOs; state sovereignty



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