Preemptive Attacks On Iran's Nuclear Facilities? 'Double Trouble'

Posted: 18 Aug 2008 Last revised: 2 May 2012

See all articles by Amin Ghanbari Amirhandeh

Amin Ghanbari Amirhandeh

Iranian Association for United Nations Studies

Date Written: August 12, 2008


This paper, seeks to be a response for two questions; firstly to see if preemptive attacks on nuclear facilities of a non-nuclear weapon nation by another nation is permissible under current international law of use of force? And secondly, can a conventional military attack on a nuclear facility amount a nuclear attack, if it causes risks to human and environmental security and political and territorial integrity of the targeted state in a weight that one can expect from a nuclear attack? If the answer to the latter was positive, what would be the responsibility of international community and the Security Council as the principal organ of the United Nations for maintaining peace and security toward this threat or act of aggression?

The answer to the first question is negative; to the second, positive and as will be discussed, five permanent members of the Security Council are individually obliged to assist targeted state with a collective action through the Council.

Keywords: preepmtive attack, preventive attack, anticipatpory self defense, nuclear facility

Suggested Citation

Ghanbari Amirhandeh, Amin, Preemptive Attacks On Iran's Nuclear Facilities? 'Double Trouble' (August 12, 2008). Available at SSRN:

Amin Ghanbari Amirhandeh (Contact Author)

Iranian Association for United Nations Studies ( email )

Alameh University Building - Karimkhan st


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