Ethiopia-Eritrea Conflict: Self Determination of Peoples or 'International Community' Interests?
20 Pages Posted: 18 Apr 2013
Date Written: March 18, 2002
The conflict between Ethiopia and Eritrea, which can be classified as an international conflict as it involves two states, calls into question the role that the supposedly peace brokers played in the conflict. Although four countries, including U.S., Britain, Soviet Union, and France, were left to determine the fate of these countries, this study finds that the role that the U.S. and Britain particularly played was considerably significant. Moreover, this decision by the ‘Big Four,’ and endorsed by the United General Assembly Resolution 390 A (V) in 1950, has seen many attempts by Eritrea to invoke the right of self- determination of peoples become fruitless. The study further finds that both Ethiopia and Eritrea do not have the legitimacy to justify their use of force, and that the rules of international human rights and humanitarian law are applicable in the conflict. These rules include prohibition of torture, inhuman punishment or treatment and the principle of legality and non-retroactivity, protection of civilians, prohibition of unnecessary suffering, and limitation in the choice of weapons.
Keywords: Ethiopia, Eritrea, international conflict, self-determination, international human rights law, international humanitarian law
JEL Classification: K39
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation