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The Power and Purpose of International LawInsights from the Theory and Practice of Enforcement$
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Mary Ellen O'Connell

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195368949

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195368949.001.0001

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Collective Countermeasures

Collective Countermeasures

(p.265) Chapter 7 Collective Countermeasures
The Power and Purpose of International Law

Mary Ellen O'Connell

Oxford University Press

International organizations or other established groups of states also take countermeasures in response to international law violations. One category of such measures is to enforce the rules of the organization or group — such as International Monetary Fund measures against borrowers that fail to repay. Collections of states also take measures to enforce general international law. These measures are commonly termed “sanctions”. Sanctions are a general-purpose law enforcement tool. They must be proportional in the circumstances and may require Security Council authorization. In the case of human rights, however, collective action short of significant armed force may be lawful today.

Keywords:   sanctions, international organizations, proportionality, authorization, injury, human rights

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