Essay on Humanitarian Intervention As A Legal Basis

1700 Words Nov 28th, 2014 7 Pages
“…while controversial, a case for humanitarian intervention as a legal basis for the use of force could be made… However, there is no carte blanche for humanitarian intervention.” Discuss.

When looking at history, it is difficult to find a time when there was no war somewhere in the world - be it a war between states or a civil war. In such times, states are seen committing war crimes or violating its peoples human rights. In those cases, other states may intervene under the doctrine of humanitarian intervention in order to protect civilians. Humanitarian intervention can be defined as “the use of force across state borders by a state (or group of states) aimed at preventing or ending widespread and grave violations of the fundamental human rights of individuals other than its own citizens, without the permission of the government of the state within whose territory, force is applied.” This essay will argue that humanitarian intervention as a legal basis for the use of force, if done in accordance with the UN charter, is the necessary and moral way to protect civilians.
Article 2(4) in the United Nations Charter explicitly prohibits the use of force: “All Members shall refrain in their international relations from the threat or use of force against the territorial integrity or political independence of any state, or in any other manner inconsistent with the Purposes of the United Nations.” The principle of jus cogens falls under this article, where certain acts such as…

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