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I. Introduction

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Chapter Summary

Self-determination conflicts are among the most persistent and destructive forms of warfare. International legal rules are made by governments. Governments have an interest in perpetuating the legitimizing myth of statehood based on an exercise of the free will of the constituents of the state - their own legitimacy depends on it. Colonial self-determination movements are entitled to establish national liberation movements, and the international system is twisted in their favour to help them overcome the last vestiges of colonialism. Self-styled self-determination movements see no alternative to armed struggle or to the use of terrorist strategies to achieve their aims. The attempt to address the concerns of ethnic communities through human rights, and minority rights provisions represented only a modest progression in thinking on the subject.

Keywords: colonialism; human rights; self-determination

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