Some Thoughts on the Future of Sovereignty in International Law Twenty Years from now

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Some Thoughts on the Future of Sovereignty in International Law Twenty Years from now

As we entered the twenty-first century questions were asked about the traditional Westphalian concept of sovereignty as part of the construction of a more coordinated international response to various humanitarian crises. The resulting World Summit Outcome document recognised that sovereignty carried responsibilities and that if a state was unwilling (or unable) to meet those responsibilities then the international community could intervene. With the implementation of this principle (the responsibility to protect) the focus has shifted from respecting sovereignty to safeguarding the victims of the various crimes falling within the scope of the principle thus adding a new dimension to international law.