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Succession of State in respect of State Responsibility

Bhagesh Gupta is a Law Student from Manipal University, Jaipur

Published onMay 03, 2022
Succession of State in respect of State Responsibility


The purpose of this paper is to look at the interrogation of state succession in terms of state duty. Although the focus of this article will be on whether, under worldwide law, the prospect of succession towards responsibilities resulting from a predecessor State's international responsibility is possible when that responsible precursor State concludes to exist. International Law Commission partakes decided on the direction of covering this issue because of its relevance. During its sixty-ninth assembly, the Commission carried out its work program, in which the Commission has written draught pieces and taken a stand that will be analyzed critically. As a result, this work engages in a pertinent examination of a portion of the limited and heterogeneous state. activity, as well as related literature and legislative tools in this area However, it has been claimed that they are not exceptions to non-succession1 in and of themselves, but rather solutions. Granted by international law in areas other than the succession of states. As a result, these 'departures' from the general norm will be examined in order to arrive at a conclusion to determine the nature of the situation.

Keywords: State, power, responsibility, international law, succession


The current topic, as defined by a Worldwide Law Commission (ILC), refers to two areas of the international law that, while traditionally considered separately as distinct areas of study, had not yet been addressed together to address the relevant topic of State responsibility succession and rights. And the responsibilities that follow (International Law Commission, 2018). These are the ones in the realms of state succession in general, as well as state international duty. State succession has historically been discussed as part of a larger discussion on the matter of state succession. A succession of states is defined as "when one state takes the place of another and undertakes a permanent exercise of its sovereign territorial rights or powers." The definition clearly favors the successor State by stating that the 'new' State inherits the predecessor's sovereign territorial rights and powers. However, the term is silent on what happens to the predecessor's commitments, particularly those that are international in nature. Treaties or international duty, for example. This omission, as well as others, is the source of the problem. Due to a lack of customary law on the subject, two Vienna Conventions on State Succession were established in 1978 and 1983 to clarify what occurs with specific rights and obligations of the States in relation to contracts and possessions, documents, and debts, respectively.

In relation to state accountability, Article 1 of the ILC Pupillages on State Duty for Worldwide Wrongful Acts (ARSIWA), which is based on worldwide customary law (Crawford, 2002: 890), stipulates that "any international A state's international obligation is triggered by its unlawful act.' It may be deduced from this clause that international culpability is limited to the State that did the globally unlawful act—the so-called intuition personae character. A sense of international duty (Kohen & Zumberry, 2019: 9) and, as a result,

The 'new' State would have to go on with the same responsibilities as the 'old' State. The preceding State's legal personality was responsible for the globally wrongful act. The question then becomes whether the successor State possesses the same rights as the predecessor State. If it has the same legal personality as the internationally accountable predecessor State that has ceased to exist or, on the contrary, whether it has a different legal identity. Four important aspects will be addressed in the evaluation of this crucial question. To begin, an examination of the concept of "international legal personality" and what it necessitates from States in order to be enjoyed. Second, how has state practice dealt with it? using this concept in succession situations and analysis of international law on the subject in particular how the two Vienna Conventions on State Successions are interpreted have taken up the problem of State sequence to certain international civil liberties and duties.

Although presence or absence of a general rule is determined by analyzing the ILC proposal for draught articles on succession to State responsibility as well as the examined State practice. It will also be examined how succession to state responsibilities works. Finally, the doctrine's proposed exceptions to non-succession will be examined in order to evaluate if they are exceptions to non-succession or other sorts of solutions.

As previously stated, the fact that succession to State responsibilities and obligations would necessitate the 'new' State to maintain the legal personality of the preceding State that committed the internationally unlawful conduct may be deduced from Article 1 of ARSIWA (Kohen & Dumberry, 2019: 9). This is not a new finding; it has been debated extensively throughout history. Grotius had already addressed this subject, according to Amos Hershey (1911: 296). He brought it up in international law when he said, "It is indisputable law that In terms of the continuity of both public and private property, the heir's person is important.

In this international legal system, the law of nations did not apply (Hershey, 1911: 296), to current international jurists like James Crawford, who believe that a state's disappearance and cessation of existence implies its extinction. When Hershey (1911: 296) defined the process of state succession has taken place according to the law (Crawford, 2006: 701). Crawford's extinction of the state states that the ingredients essential for statehood are no longer extant, and thus that the prior State's legal identity is no longer existent, which may be perpetuated by the succeeding State. The reality is that a state falls extinct and no legal successor emerges, as Crawford describes it. As a result, individuality no longer exists, according to the Montevideo Convention of 1933. States' Rights and Obligations This convention, which reflects the accepted world in its Article 1, the legislation (Vidmar, 2013: 39) states that international legal personality necessitates, among other things, a permanent territory and a government.

State succession practice and case law where a previous state ceases to exist, as well as treaty law on State succession;

State Practice

As the ILC has noted and acknowledged, state practice on this subject is limited (International Law Co2mmission, 2018). However, important issues might be initiated from them. Only current technologies are allowed to follow the ILC in this regard. The International Law Commission will examine relevant case law and state practice (International Law Commission, 2018).

United Arab Republic

In 1958, the then-newly formed the United Arab Republic assumed international responsibility for one of its predecessor states, Egypt, which had participated in an unlawful process of nationalization of enterprises previously controlled by foreign investors in the Suez Canal. The unification of ‘Egypt including Syria’ in the direction of establishing the ‘United Arab Republic’ resulted in the abolition of the Egyptian monarchy. The governments of these two nations overlay the way for the foundation of a new worldwide organization the new United Arab Republic's government.

As a result, as required by Article 1, both Egypt and Syria's sovereignty and international legal personality were terminated at that time. As a result, the United Arab Republic had a distinct legal identity from its forerunners. The issue, therefore, becomes, how did the United Arab Republic come to be Internationally responsible for the actions of its predecessor. Because of the discontinuity of the antecedents, this could not have happened by 'automatic succession.' The United Arab Republic, on the other hand, committed to, among other things, other countries that have been damaged, France the re-establishment of the property that Egypt had previously seized in addition to the payment of remuneration (International Law Commission, 2018). The French Government has highlighted [that] the settlements made in this connection shall represent the release and complete and final settlement for the Administration of the United Arab Republic in this matter,' the preamble of the relevant agreement states. All claims of French holders of the shares and interests in question will be respected'. The assertions in dispute were precisely those made in relation to Egypt's actions. Before the emergence of the European Union, France's property was nationalized without recompense United Arab Republic is a country in the Middle East.

The accord's phrasing implies that these claims would be filed against the United Arab Republic regardless of any agreement. However, the agreement ultimately prevented international jurists from learning what would have happened if a lawsuit for Egypt's actions had been filed against the ‘United Arab Republic’. Nonetheless, an instance of the ‘United Arab Republic’ as stated demonstrates that there is no "absolute" rule against the "taking over" of international responsibilities and duties stemming from wrongful conduct in all situations. A forerunner state However, he opposes the thought of automatic sequence to the preceding State's worldwide duty Furthermore, it emphasizes the significance of the succeeding State's agreement to undertake the duties. Regarding liability for a bad act committed by a now the Supreme Court of Austria recognized the inapplicability of an automatic succession of State to worldwide responsibility in the case of United Arab Republic, holding in the S. v Austria case of 2002 that "according to the rules of international law, there is no legal basis for In the realm of state responsibility, there is a succession of personal rights and duties.”

Treaty law on State succession

Due to the lack of a treaty on the subject of State succession to international accountability, comparative rules in other treaties relating to State succession in admiration of specific rights and responsibilities can be found. In this case, The Vienna Convention of 1978 was the first of two major treaties to be drafted. The ‘Vienna Agreement’ on the Sequence of States in Admiration of Treaties (hereinafter VCSST) and Vienna Agreement about the Chain of States in Admiration of State-run Possessions, Records, including Documents (hereinafter VCSST) were signed in 1983. Despite the fact that these two conventions have separate scopes of application12 and that no automatic transfer of their principles to succession to State responsibility is possible, relevant implications for the matter at hand may nevertheless be made. State succession is defined in both agreements as "the replacement of one State by another in the responsibility for international territorial relations." The inclusion of a statement of clarification in the travoix (Commission, 1974) led to the inclusion of a statement of clarification in the travoix.

Another essential characteristic of these conventions' relatively restricted reach is seen in Article 9 of the VCSSPAD, which takes the perspective that the prior State's existing property rights (and responsibilities) do not apply to have a kind of 'continuity' that passes immediately to the succeeding state Rather, this provision has reached a natural end, namely, the predecessor's extinction. The extinction of a state's rights and duties is also a result of the extinction of that state's rights and obligations. As a result, in order for the Successor State to gain the rights in the case of the VCSSPAD, these rights emerge and are exercised in relation to the property formerly owned by the predecessor.

Is there then a transition from state to state duty when the antecedent State no longer exists?

International Law Commission found from its analysis of case law that state practice allowed inference of the existence of a presumption by which a worldwide illegal act since a precursor State flows to a successor State (International Law Commission, 2018). The International Law Commission (ILC) has entrenched many of the suggested draught Articles on the subject make this assumption. As an example, 'When two or more States join together,' according to proposed Article 10(1). To unify and establish a new successor state, and the responsibility that comes with an internationally recognized successor state Any predecessor State's unjust behavior passes to the successor State' (International Law) 2018 (Commission).

Although the ILC correctly assesses that the majority of cases have resulted in the successor States receiving responsibilities ascending from the predecessor's internationally unlawful act, 3this paper concludes that the ILC has mixed different concepts,15 particularly because, as previously stated, case law does not show an automatic succession to international responsibility. State policy mostly expresses successor states' readiness to undertake international obligations that they do not have initially, but that they acquire through legal methods. As a result, the ICL developed a more appropriate approach in circumstances of state dissolution, proposing that the duties emanating from internationally unlawful conduct of the dissolved predecessor State permit to the inheritor Municipal under draught article 11. The transfer of the obligations, on the other hand, will be contingent on an agreement resolved in good faith, involving the damaged party as well as the succeeding State (International Law Commission, 2018), allowing international law to fix the situation.

As a result, the ILC recognizes that the compulsions do not automatically permit the successor State, as the substance will rely on a good-faith agreement between all parties involved in order to avoid the undesirable result of the mere extinction of the obligations caused by the extermination of the predecessor State. Therefore the presence of a general, though not absolute, norm of nonautomatic succession to State responsibility in circumstances wherever the antecedent State finishes existing can therefore remain deduced from State practice as well as treaty law on State succession. This article does not attempt to show the existence of exceptions to this rule (as will be discussed in the next item), but rather to bring out that it is not absolute.

The general rule of non-succession does have several exceptions

Although part of this concept adheres to the general norm of non-sequence to international accountability, it is evident that the mere removal of an obligation to remedy internationally unlawful conduct goes against international law's fundamental essence (Dumberry, 2007: 104). This is why the Worldwide Law Commission, the International Law Institute, and a number of academics have recommended the creation of 'exceptions' to the norm, culminating in a new rule. Non-succession deviation (International Law Commission, 2018; Dumbery, 2007:263). As a result, some academics have suggested that the general rule of non-sequence is vulnerable to exceptions. Exceptions of (1) unjust enrichment; (2) the permission of the parties, including the injured party, expressed in writing; and (3) the consent of the parties, including the injured party, expressed in writing, are among the most essential. According to the Institute of International Law, the last-mentioned suggested exemption relates to (Kohen & Dumberry, 2019: 98-99) internationally unjust conduct done against but not including a predecessor State and succeeding State territory or people. As a result, this last solution only applies to succession circumstances. Rights, not responsibilities – deriving from globally unlawful conduct, coming within the jurisdiction of the United Nations. As a result, this paper's scope is limited. It's also worth considering if these proposed 'exceptions' are, in fact, exceptions to the general norm or, rather, remedies to the loss of the need to pay an injured State owing to the predecessor State's departure.

Unjust Enrichment

Academics are divided on whether the concept of unjust enrichment may be legitimately applied to allow States to succeed in duties deriving from international responsibility under the first exemption mentioned. The vagueness of this idea has made a clear definition difficult to come by. However, there are a few fundamentals that must be addressed. For a claim of unjust enrichment to prevail, there must be evidence that a State has enriched itself; that this enrichment is unfair; that the unjust enrichment is harmful to another State (Dumberry, 2007: 264); and that there is no evidence that the state been enriched itself.
The concept of unjust enrichment corrects a situation that, while lawful, is seen to be contrary to international law's essence. This solution, however, is unrelated to the matter of State succession to worldwide duty; rather, unrelated to the subject of State sequence to worldwide concern. Due to the uniqueness, as Gil Carlos points out, the answer embraces a larger context. As Rodrigues Iglesias points out, the responsibilities that arise as a result of an agreement are not the same as the obligations that arise as a result of a contract.

Agreement between the Parties and Unilateral Declaration

The overall rule of non-sequence still applies in the case of the proposed "exception," in which an agreement is stretched between the injured party and the inheritor State. The successor State receipts the duties of its predecessor, but this does not imply that the successor's commitments have always been valid. It has its own legal status. With the dissolution of the offender's previous State (Moscow), these duties stemming from the internationally unlawful conduct go extinct. As previously stated, the " personae" character of international liability in international law helps explain such extinctions of responsibilities stemming from globally unlawful conduct done by the preceding State. ARSIWA's Article 1 enshrines this principle (Kohen & Dumberry, 2019: 9). Furthermore, and by way of comparison, Article 9 of the 1983 Vienna Convention on State Property, Records, and Credits provides "the transfer of State property of the preceding State includes the extinction of the rights of the successor State that Municipal and the emergence of inheritor State-run's rights to the State's property.

The autonomous entity of the Predecessor State Commits Internationally Wrongful Act

Although this 'exception' has been included in circumstances of secession where the previous State still exists20, the basic notion is that when a 'new' successor State appears, the autonomous unit of the predecessor State becomes an organ of the latter. In this context, the attributability criterion stated in, given the circumstances, Article 2 of ARSIWA would still be satisfied (International Law Commission, 2001).

Article 4 of ARSIWA states, "Any State organ shall conduct itself in a manner that is consistent with the Constitution." be measured as an act of that State underneath worldwide law, (...) irrespective of its position in the State's organization or its nature as a central government 4institution or a geographical entity of the State' (According to the International Law Commission, 2001). As a result, this is another instance in which succession is irrelevant; rather, it concerns the continuance of the responsibilities delegated by Dumberry (2007: 260) As a result, the obligation begins as a simple one held by the autonomous body before independence, to be held 'jointly' after it becomes independent becomes a member of the succeeding state (Dumberry, 2007: 260). Article 10(2) ARSIWA provides for the attribution of internationally unlawful actions performed by insurrectional groups leading to the solution of the issue by comparison. It may be inferred that the occurrences referred to as "exceptions" to the general rule of non-succession are incorrectly associated with succession itself. They can be seen as remedies to the inequitable effects of non-succession, but not as an exception to non-succession. This is due to the fact that, as previously stated, the answers do not establish a succession' to the predecessor's duties in the legal sense States, on the other hand, are allowed to create their own international legal obligations. that are not initially legally equivalent to them (e.g., in the case of an agreement) or it imposes new obligations on the successor State that do not arise directly from the successor State's international concern for the wrongful act (e.g., in the case of unjust enrichment, where liability arises from the enrichment of a third party).


Given the presence of a historic all-purpose rule of non-sequence in situations of international responsibility, the inclusion of the current issue in the ILC program of work elucidates its importance and relevance for the world community. This condition jeopardizes the essence of international law by creating uncomfortable and manifestly unjust circumstances in which international responsibilities are violated. The sheer removal of international unlawful conduct makes extinct the responsible forerunner State. Even while the situation appears unjust and provides an unfavorable scenario in principle, the majority of state practice and case law on the subject has ended in the exact opposite outcome. When a previous state ceases to exist, most successor states have been held liable for the actions of their predecessor.

However, it should be noted that the desired outcomes of state practice and case law have not been resolved by applying international law of State succession to international duty. Rather, the solutions show that these outcomes are the result of the parties' willingness to assume international obligations that were not legally theirs in principle or their acceptance of the 'new'. State to continue the predecessor's legal personality, in which case the predecessor's legal personality is not judged to have died out.

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