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The legality of the use of force against Iraq in 2003

Barakat, M. (2007). The legality of the use of force against Iraq in 2003. (Unpublished Doctoral thesis, City University London)


The object of this thesis is to assess the legality of the use of force against Iraq in 2003. To do so, the study examines the validity of the justifications put forward by the US and the UK for their action in light of the existing regulations on the use of force. These justifications are as follows: i) the Security Council authorization for the use of force; ii) the right of self-defence in pre-emptive action against threats from Iraq; iii) the right of pro-democratic intervention in Iraq in order to relieve the Iraqi people of vast and continuing human rights violations by the despotic regime of Saddam Hussein. The thesis begins with an introduction which indicates the scope of the study, the approach adopted and the outline of the thesis. The opening chapter reviews the regulation of the use of force under the UN Charter. The second chapter examines the Iran-Iraq war 1980-1988. The third chapter analyses the Kuwait crisis and its sequels. Chapter Four interprets Resolution 678 according to the rules of interpretation in order to determine whether the mandate of that resolution was extinguished after Iraq had been expelled from Kuwait, or still governed the situation in 2003. Chapter Five investigates the rules governing armistice agreements in order to explore whether the coalition forces had the right to terminate the cease-fire and resume hostilities, without new authorization of force, on grounds of Iraq's violations of the conditions established in the cease-fire Resolution 687. The sixth chapter scrutinizes the legality of the disarmament sanctions imposed upon Iraq in Resolution 687 and Iraq's right to defy the implementation of these measures, should their imposition be proved to be an ultra vires act by the Security Council. Chapter Seven examines the validity of the argument that the invasion was a pre-emptive self-defence against threats from Iraq. Chapter Eight inspects whether the invasion can be characterized and justified as a `prodemocratic' war. Finally, the conclusion summarises the findings of the research.

Publication Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Subjects: K Law
Departments: The City Law School
Doctoral Theses
The City Law School > The City Law School Doctoral Theses
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