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Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law [MPEPIL]

Soft Law

Daniel Thürer

Subject(s):
Soft law — Sovereignty — Customary international law — Opinio juris

Published under the auspices of the Max Planck Foundation for International Peace and the Rule of Law under the direction of Rüdiger Wolfrum.

1 Social norms of varying character and relevance influence the behaviour and decisions of actors participating in international relations. As far as their binding quality is concerned, such social norms range from purely moral or political commitments to strictly legal ones. 2 Yet between these fairly clear-cut categories exists a wide range of other rules, the legally binding character of which has been deliberately and sometimes explicitly denied by their drafters, but which nevertheless cannot be considered mere moral or political directives. In this category...
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