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Part 1 The Cold War Era (1945–89), 4 The Suez Crisis—1956

Alexandra Hofer

From: The Use of Force in International Law: A Case-Based Approach

Edited By: Tom Ruys, Olivier Corten, Alexandra Hofer

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved.date: 23 June 2024

Precedent — Humanitarian intervention

This chapter examines the intervention led by France, the United Kingdom and Israel against Egypt in 1956. After recalling the facts of the Suez Canal Crisis, it examines the legal positions of the main protagonists (Israel, France, the United Kingdom and Egypt) and the reactions of United Nations member states. The intervention’s legality is then assessed against the international legal framework governing the use of force as it stood in 1956. The final section analyses the intervention’s precedential value and its impact on the jus ad bellum. It is argued that if the intervention initially undermined the United Nations, the forceful reaction of UN member states affirmed the importance of the UN Organization and its principles.

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