Sovereignty – Determination – Secession Cover Image
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Suverenost – samoopredeljenje – secesija
Sovereignty – Determination – Secession

Author(s): Slobodan Samardžić
Subject(s): Politics / Political Sciences
Published by: Nova srpska politička misao
Keywords: sovereignty; secession; unique case; self-determination; legal-normative approach; theory-based approach; stability;

Summary/Abstract: The starting point of this article is that in recent years Kosovo proved to be a good testing ground for checking the capability of the international community, readiness of both Serbs and Albanians to make compromise and the values underlying the modern political order, especially the one established in Europe. In that sense, the author analyzes the notion of “precedent”, distinguishing the negative meaning of precedent in international relations and its positive meaning, which refers to a possible way of settling internal relations. The argument that the “precedent character” of the Kosovo issue should in no way be interpreted as “precedent” in its primary sense is given through an analysis of the Kosovo case as a classic example of secession, i.e. through the political/legal fact that the dispute between the Serbs and Albanians is a conflict between sovereignty and secession. Starting with the fact that there is a conflict between the right of a state to claim its sovereignty and the right of an ethnic community to self-determination, in the other part of the paper the author elaborates on the legal-normative and the theory-based approaches. He concludes that in both senses the question of secession faces both formal and material difficulties and that the consequences of Kosovo’s secession, as a “precedent” in its negative meaning, will permanently have a conflicting character and an impact on the future and stability of the Balkans.

  • Issue Year: 16/2008
  • Issue No: 01+02
  • Page Range: 33-51
  • Page Count: 17
  • Language: Serbian