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National Minorities and the European Nation-States System$
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Jennifer Jackson Preece

Print publication date: 1998

Print ISBN-13: 9780198294375

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198294375.001.0001

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National Minority Rights Enforcement Mechanisms (1990–1995)

National Minority Rights Enforcement Mechanisms (1990–1995)

(p.140) Chapter 8 National Minority Rights Enforcement Mechanisms (1990–1995)
National Minorities and the European Nation-States System


Oxford University Press

By the mid-1990s, international society had come to include, alongside those traditional rights which states could claim against one another, a growing number of human and national minority rights men and women could claim against states. However, these humanitarian principles remained subordinate to the preservation of international order defined in statist terms — equal sovereignty, non-intervention, inviolability of borders, etc. National minority rights were acceptable only in so far as they encouraged democratisation in post-communist states, ameliorated national minority/majority tensions, reduced migration to kin-states, and improved bilateral relations between kin-states and those states where their kin-minority resided. Attempting to get the balance correct was the main challenge confronting both the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe and the Council of Europe in their efforts to enforce the emerging European standard of state conduct towards national minorities between 1990 and 1995. This chapter describes and evaluates the various mechanisms of national minority rights enforcement in Europe at that time.

Keywords:   Europe, national minorities, minority rights, Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, Council of Europe, state conduct, international organisations, ethnic conflict, democratisation

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