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Historicizing and Contextualizing the Discourse on African International Law and A Concise Overview of the Pacific Settlement of the Cameroon-Nigeria Bakassi Peninsula Dispute

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For more content, see Journal of Asian and African Studies.

For the past 50 years or so, the media and intellectual discourses on African politics have general portrayed the continent as being in perpetual turmoil. The causes of such conflicts have been related, but not limited, to the outcome of the Berlin Conference of 1884-85 in which some of the European powers carved up the region in a zigzag fashion with little or no concern for the ethnic complexions of the societies. The result of this policy in post-colonial and independent Africa has been disastrous for much of the continent with numerous civil wars and cross border clashes between African states. The use of arms struggle to resolve border conflicts is now seen as counter productive to the vision of African unity and transformation in the millennium as first articulated by the Organization of African Unity and now championed by the African Union – the successor to the OAU. This study brings into the limelight the extent to which African states are increasingly relying on international law, the AU and the Good Offices of the UN and its various agencies to resolve international boundary conflicts. It also historicized the development of international law in Africa and discussed as a case study the impressive pacific settlement of the explosive border dispute between Cameroon and Nigeria to illustrate its importance as a model for Africa.

Affiliations: 1: Association of Third World Studies (ATWS) Department of Political Science and Criminal Justice, Old Belk Library, Appalachian State University, Boone, NC 28608-2107

10.1163/156921008X279316
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/content/journals/10.1163/156921008x279316
2008-02-01
2016-12-11

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