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National sovereignty and statehood in contemporary international law: the need for clarification

Motion for a resolution | Doc. 12251 | 11 May 2010

Mr Holger HAIBACH, Germany, EPP/CD ; Mr Miloš ALIGRUDIĆ, Serbia, EPP/CD ; Ms Marie-Louise BEMELMANS-VIDEC, Netherlands, EPP/CD ; Mr József BERÉNYI, Slovak Republic ; Mr Patrick BREEN, Ireland, EPP/CD ; Mr David DARCHIASHVILI, Georgia, EPP/CD ; Mr Arcadio DÍAZ TEJERA, Spain, SOC ; Mr Renato FARINA, Italy, EPP/CD ; Mr Jean-Charles GARDETTO, Monaco, EPP/CD ; Mr Andreas GROSS, Switzerland, SOC ; Mr Serhiy HOLOVATY, Ukraine, ALDE ; Mr Johannes HÜBNER, Austria, NR ; Mr Željko IVANJI, Serbia, EPP/CD ; Mr Tadeusz IWIŃSKI, Poland, SOC ; Ms Corien W.A. JONKER, Netherlands, EPP/CD ; Mr Tiny KOX, Netherlands, UEL ; Mr Franz Eduard KÜHNEL, Austria, EPP/CD ; Mr Terry LEYDEN, Ireland, ALDE ; Mr Pietro MARCENARO, Italy, SOC ; Mr Dick MARTY, Switzerland, ALDE ; Mr José MENDES BOTA, Portugal, EPP/CD ; Ms Marietta de POURBAIX-LUNDIN, Sweden, EPP/CD ; Mr Christos POURGOURIDES, Cyprus, EPP/CD ; Mr Lluís Maria de PUIG i OLIVE, Spain, SOC ; Mr Andrea RIGONI, Italy, ALDE ; Ms Marina SCHUSTER, Germany, ALDE ; Mr Björn von SYDOW, Sweden, SOC ; Lord John E. TOMLINSON, United Kingdom, SOC ; Mr Latchezar TOSHEV, Bulgaria, EPP/CD ; Mr Luca VOLONTÈ, Italy, EPP/CD ; Mr Emanuelis ZINGERIS, Lithuania, EPP/CD

The Parliamentary Assembly observes that a number of territorial entities in Council of Europe member states are aspiring to be recognised as independent states.

It notes that the criteria for statehood are still far from clear in contemporary international law.

The lack of clear criteria for statehood encourages numerous secessionist movements and thus threatens peace, stability and the territorial integrity of existing states, also in Europe.

The Assembly notes that the notions of national sovereignty and statehood have evolved in recent years.

A multilateral approach to the “duty to protect” as advocated by the International Commission on Intervention and State Sovereignty (ICISS) is taking the place of arbitrary interventions and bilateral guarantees.

European integration and co-operation have led to a voluntary relinquishment of certain aspects of national sovereignty ; notably, the rights of individuals are properly protected by the machinery of the European Convention of Human Rights.

The Assembly therefore proposes that the criteria for statehood and the modalities of protection of national sovereignty and territorial integrity of states shall be examined thoroughly, for example in the framework of a follow-up conference to the ICISS on the initiative of the Council of Europe.