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1 Introduction

From: Military Assistance on Request and the Use of Force

Erika De Wet

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved.date: 20 April 2024

Military assistance — International organizations — Customary international law — Consent to jurisdiction — UN Charter

This introductory chapter provides an overview of the concept of military assistance on request. By expressing a request for military assistance, a state essentially expresses consent to be bound by an agreement in accordance with which another subject of international law can exercise forcible measures on the requesting state’s territory. Contemporary state practice suggests that these agreements can be divided into two broad categories, the first being requests for military assistance by a state to one or more states, while the second concerns requests for military assistance made to international organizations (notably in the form of regional and sub-regional organizations). One may further distinguish between ad hoc requests for (or consent to) military assistance in response to a particular situation that has arisen in the territorial state, and ex ante consent included in a pro-invasion (guarantee) treaty clause. The chapter then looks at the key legal controversies regarding military assistance, which will be discussed in the next chapters. It concludes by clarifying key concepts and the methodology applied throughout the analysis.

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