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From External to the Internal Application of the Right to Self-Determination: The Case of Nepal

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Even until a few decades ago, international law and its principles could hardly be contemplated as playing catalytic roles in fashioning the rights of people at domestic levels. Today a number of international instruments do not only constitute the rights of people, but also people are giving much prominence to rights enshrined in international law and demanding their implementation at domestic levels. In this context, Nepal presents a noteworthy case, especially in regard to the protection and promotion of the rights of minority groups, ethnic groups, and indigenous people at the domestic level in consonance with international laws related to the rights of self-determination. Against this background, this paper examines the issue of the right to self-determination, its external and internal application, its epistemology, and problems associated with its implementation in the context of state restructuring in the post-conflict period of Nepal.

Affiliations: 1: Associate Professor of Law, Ritsumeikan University, Kyoto, Japan,


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