- Research Handbooks in International Law series
Edited by Ben Saul
Chapter 3: Terrorism and the international law of state responsibilityTerrorism and the international law of state responsibility
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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