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Responding to Attacks by Non-state Actors: The Attribution Requirement of Self-defence

Australian International Law Journal
Volume 16 (2009)

Abstract: There is controversy about whether and in what circumstances a State may act in self-defence in response to armed attacks carried out by non-State actors. Through an examination of State practice and ICJ decisions, this article examines the requirement that an armed attack must be attributable to the State against which self-defence is exercised. The author argues that there is confusion in the way in which the topic has been dealt with, and seeks to clarify some important conceptual issues. Ultimately, it is argued that the previously accepted 'effective control' attribution threshold permitting self-defence has been altered by the military response in the wake of the 11 September 2001 terrorist attacks, to a test of 'sanctuary and support'.

To cite this article: Michael, Brent. Responding to Attacks by Non-state Actors: The Attribution Requirement of Self-defence [online]. Australian International Law Journal, Vol. 16, 2009: [133]-159. Availability: <http://search.informit.com.au/documentSummary;dn=562250889330205;res=IELHSS> ISSN: 1325-5029. [cited 26 May 16].

Personal Author: Michael, Brent; Source: Australian International Law Journal, Vol. 16, 2009: [133]-159 Document Type: Journal Article ISSN: 1325-5029 Subject: War (International law); Terrorism--Prevention--Law and legislation; Non-state actors (International relations); Self-defense (International law); Peer Reviewed: Yes

Database: Humanities & Social Sciences Collection