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Cover International Law

20. The Use of Force and the International Legal Order  

Christine Gray

This chapter examines the law on the use of force. It discusses the UN Charter scheme; the Prohibition of the Use of Force in Article 2(4) of the UN Charter; intervention, civil wars, and invitation; self-defence; the use of force under Chapter VII of the UN Charter; UN peacekeeping; and regional action under Chapter VIII of the UN Charter. The UN Charter provisions on the use of force by States, Article 2(4) on the prohibition of force, and Article 51 on self-defence, have all caused fundamental divisions between States. There is disagreement as to whether the prohibition on force should be interpreted strictly or whether it allows humanitarian intervention, as in Kosovo. There is also disagreement over the scope of the right of self-defence. The response to the 9/11 terrorist attacks has led to a fundamental reappraisal of the law in this area.


Cover The Politics of the Police

5. The police role, function and effects  

Benjamin Bowling, Robert Reiner, and James Sheptycki

This chapter explores some of the political myths about police and policing by reviewing the research evidence on police practice. It considers the police role in theory and practice by focusing on three questions: what is the police role? what do the police actually do? and how well do they do it? It explores the original historical purpose of the police, the governmental authority on which it is based, the role of public opinion, why people call the police, the role and effectiveness of the police in crime control, and in broader social functions. The chapter concludes that the core function of the police is best analysed not in terms of any of their social functions but rather the special character of the means the police can bring to bear. Underlying the diversity of situations to which the police are called is the core capacity to use legitimate coercive force.


Cover Cassese's International Law

16. Collective Security and the use of Armed Force  

Paola Gaeta, Jorge E. Viñuales, and Salvatore Zappalà

The Cold War era prevented the UN Security Council from using most of the powers provided for by the UN Charter, including adopting measures under Chapter VII (the so-called ‘collective security system’ which provides for measures ranging from sanctions to the use of armed force) for events deemed (by the Security Council) to be threats to the peace, breaches of the peace, or acts of aggression. However, the end of the Cold War enabled the Security Council to take some of the measures short of force envisaged in Article 41 and to interpret creatively the provisions of the Charter so as to authorize enforcement action through the use of armed force by individual States or coalitions of States. This chapter discusses measures short of armed force; peacekeeping operations; resort to force by States, as well as regional and other organizations, upon authorization of the Security Council; the special case of authorization to use force given by the General Assembly; as well as the right to self-defence and the various situations in which armed force has been used unilaterally by States.


Cover Brownlie's Principles of Public International Law

33. Use or threat of force by states  

This chapter discusses international law governing the use or threat of force by states. The UN Security Council has primary responsibility for enforcement action to deal with breaches of the peace, threats to the peace, or acts of aggression. Individual member states have the right of individual or collective self-defence, but only ‘until the Security Council has taken measures necessary to maintain international peace and security’. However, the practice has evolved of authorizing peacekeeping operations that are contingent upon the consent of the state whose territory is the site of the operations.