A failed state is a country with a government that cannot or will not deliver essential public services (political goods) to its citizens. Failed states are those political entities in international politics that supply deficient qualities and quantities of political goods and, simultaneously, no longer exercise a monopoly of violence within their territories. Failed states are violent. There are no failed states that do not harbour civil wars. When there are one or more insurgencies within the state, and when other critical criteria are met, we have a failed state. This chapter examines the range of failed or failing states that have affected Europe’s security interests since the end of the cold war.
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