This book analyzes the emerging practice in the post-Cold War era of the creation of a democratic political system along with the creation of new states. The existing literature either tends to conflate self-determination and democracy or dismisses the legal relevance of the emerging practice on the basis that democracy is not a statehood criterion. However, such arguments are simplistic. The statehood criteria in contemporary international law are largely irrelevant and do not automatically or self-evidently determine whether or not an entity has emerged as a new state. The question to be asked, therefore, is not whether democracy has become a statehood criterion. The emergence of new states is rather a law-governed political process in which certain requirements regarding the type of a government may be imposed internationally. And, in this process, the introduction of a democratic political system is equally as relevant or irrelevant as the statehood criteria. The book demonstrates that, via the right of self-determination, the law of statehood requires for state creation to be a democratic process, but that this requirement should not be interpreted too broadly. The democratic process in this context governs independence referenda and does not interfere with the choice of a political system. (Series: Studies in International Law - Vol. 46)
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Jure Vidmar is a Leverhulme Early Career Fellow in the Faculty of Law and a Research Fellow of St John's College, University of Oxford.Review:
..up-to-date, systematic and authoritative coverage of state creation and recognition in the international order. The book caps its author's series of substantial contributions to the literature on this topic. (Brad Roth EJIL: Talk!)
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