Research Handbook on International Law and Peace
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Research Handbook on International Law and Peace

Edited by Cecilia M. Bailliet

Peace is an elusive concept, especially within the field of international law, varying according to historical era and between contextual applications within different cultures, institutions, societies, and academic traditions. This Research Handbook responds to the gap created by the neglect of peace in international law scholarship. Explaining the normative evolution of peace from the principles of peaceful co-existence to the UN declaration on the right to peace, this Research Handbook calls for the fortification of international institutions to facilitate the pursuit of sustainable peace as a public good.
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Chapter 4: The good faith obligation to maintain international peace and security and the pacific settlement of disputes

Cecilia M. Bailliet and Simon O’Connor


This chapter addresses the character of the obligations in the UN Charter with respect to the maintenance of international peace and security as articulated in Article 1(1), (2), and (3), and Chapters VI and VIII. This contribution discusses the sequential nature of the Charter to emphasize the obligations, first and foremost, to resolve disputes peacefully and prevent escalation. The chapter presents the framework of UN Bodies, including the Security Council, General Assembly, and office of the Secretary-General and their practice in implementing these obligations. Additionally, it underscores the importance of recourse to these fora in pursuing negotiations between States and non-State actors. Finally, it delineates the role of regional mechanisms in enabling States to fulfil their primary duty of pacific settlement. It concludes by examining whether future implementation should be strengthened within existing UN and regional institutions addressing the pacific settlement of disputes.

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