Table of Contents

Research Handbook on International Law and Terrorism

Research Handbook on International Law and Terrorism

Research Handbooks in International Law series

Edited by Ben Saul

This Handbook brings together leading scholars and practitioners to examine the prolific body of international laws governing terrorism. It exhaustively covers the global response to terrorism in transnational criminal law, the international law on the use of force, international humanitarian law, international human rights law, the law of State responsibility, the United Nations Security Council, General Assembly, UN specialised bodies, and regional organisations. It also addresses special legal issues in dealing with terrorism such as gender, religion, victims of terrorism, weapons of mass destruction, and customary law.

Chapter 3: Terrorism and the international law of state responsibilityTerrorism and the international law of state responsibility

Kimberley Trapp

Subjects: law - academic, human rights, public international law, terrorism and security law, politics and public policy, human rights, terrorism and security


The international community has long co-operated in its efforts to suppress international terrorism. These efforts have principally taken three forms: (i) international treaties aimed at securing the individual criminal responsibility of terrorist actors; (ii) individual or multilateral military responses to terrorist attacks in reliance on Article 51 of the UN Charter; and (iii) Security Council measures adopted under Chapter VII of the UN Charter, straddling the individual criminal responsibility and jus ad bellum approaches. While these responses are important weapons in the international community’s counter-terrorism arsenal, ensuring that individual actors are held criminally responsible for their terrorist offences and responding to terrorism through a security paradigm does not fully address the systemic consequences of un-remedied breaches of international law.

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