Research Handbook on International Law and Terrorism
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Research Handbook on International Law and Terrorism

Edited by Ben Saul

This newly revised and updated second edition provides a comprehensive overview of international counter-terrorism law and practice. Brand new and revised chapters provide critical commentary on the law from leading scholars and practitioners in the field, including new topics for this edition such as foreign terrorist fighters, the nexus between organized crime and terrorism, and the prevention of violent extremism.
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Chapter 3: Terrorism and the international law of state responsibility

Kimberley N. Trapp


Adopting the framework of primary and secondary rules set out in the ILC’s work on State Responsibility, this chapter explores (i) state obligations to refrain from engaging in and to prevent acts of international terrorism, and to extradite or submit terrorist actors for prosecution, and (ii) the particularities of applying the secondary rules of state responsibility to the terrorism context. In so doing, the chapter considers acts of state sponsored terrorism and the challenges involved in meeting relevant thresholds of attribution, discussing in particular the Ukraine’s case against Russia before the International Court of Justice (ICJ), in respect of the downing of MH17. Finally, the chapter explores the implementation of state responsibility in the terrorism context, looking to the ICJ as means of securing ‘justice’ for victim states without risking further (unnecessary) disruptions to international peace and security.

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