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Lecture 15

POLI 244 Lecture 15: POLI 244 11-7-2016

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Political Science
POLI 244
Fernando Nunez- Mietz

POLI 244-World Politics-11/7/2016 International Law Definitions and Basics -Body of legal rules which regulates behavior of states and other actors -Relies on primary rules and secondary rules -Primary rules are rules of law which contain prescriptions about behavior -Do this or don’t do this -Includes things like the fundamental principle of sovereignty -Also includes obligations to do things, like submit human rights reports -Secondary rules are like a constitution for a legal structure -International human rights and criminal law are different Problems with International Law -Anarchy makes it very difficult to overcomeno central state -Interpretation problem -Determining what the law is and how it should apply -States are the main interpreters which is an issue -Enforcement problem -Self-help system which requires some relative power -So smaller nations suffer Sources of International Law -Customary law -State practice, unwritten and older -Ambiguous, which creates serious interpretation problems -Obligatory rule and the motivation states follow to behave this way is important -Incredibly complicated to prove, because states follow a belief that they have an obligation -When it’s codified it becomes treaty law -Negotiation and ratification necessary, which is arduous and politicized -Tough to determine which parts are essential and which are negotiable -Common interests must be found to bring all together -Written down, so interpretation is sometimes tough if they are written in a vague fashion -Agreements have different levels of legalization -Level of obligation -Are the primary rules aspirational or practicaldenuclearizing is aspirational -However the NPT has obligatory rules about new acquisition -Precision
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