Succession of States in respect of Treaties

Author:Jana Maftei
Position:Associate Professor, PhD,'Danubius' University of Galati, Romania
Globalization and Cultural Diversity
Succession of States in Respect of Treaties
Jana Maftei
Abstract: Although the issue of regulating the succession of states was forcefully expressed especially after
the Second World War, in terms of emergence of new states after the decolonization process, this institution
has not lost its actuality, not even in the early 21st century. The transformations, which occur within the
international society and affecting the sovereignty, generate legal consequences, regarding the succession of
the successor state to the treaties of th e predecessor state. We have an alyzed in this paper the issu e of
succession of states to the international treaties related to the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties from
1969 and The Vienna Convention on Succession of States in respect of Treaties from 1978. To the traditional
framework of solving situations of state succession to treaties we have added recent and concrete dimensions
that states have chosen to u se in this matter. For the elaboration of the paper we have used as research
methods, the analysis on issues related to the mentioned problems referring to the doctrinal views expressed
in treaties and scientific papers, documentary research, interpretation of legal norms in the matter.
Keywords: international law; sovereignty; Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties; international legal
1. Introduction
The succession of states issue remains a domain of gr eat uncertainty a nd controversy (Brownlie,
1990, p. 655) and that is because the feature of its legal and political institution involves not only
applying a set of rules of law in order to solve issues arising from the change occurred in the
international society, but also taking into consideration the political dimension (Duculescu, 1982, p
13) of these international relations.
The succession of states can be viewed from three perspectives: the succession to treaties and to
international organizations reflected by the relations established between the successor state and the
other subjects of the international community; succession to property, archives, debts regarding the
relations between state successor and predecessor State; succession referring to relations between the
successor state and citizens. Only the first mentioned dimension of the state succession represents the
subject of this paper, a complete analysis would require a larger space, being determined by the
complexity of this issue.
The complexity of the succession of States issue for international public law is given by the fact it is
needed to take into consideration not only two partners - the predecessor State and the successor
State - as it was erroneously claimed by some authors in the specialized domain, but a considerable
number of third party states enga ged in an extensive network of international a greements.
(Duculescu, 2002, p. 442)
1       , Address: 3 Galati Boulevard, 800654 Galati,
Romania, Tel.: +40.372.361.102, fax: +40.372.361.290. Corresponding author:

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