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Part IV Treaty Application, 18 Treaty Conflicts and Systemic Fragmentation

Christopher J Borgen

From: The Oxford Guide to Treaties (2nd Edition)

Edited By: Duncan B. Hollis

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved.date: 02 December 2023

Treaties, interpretation — Treaties, observance

This chapter examines treaty conflicts and the systemic fragmentation of international law more generally. It focuses on fragmentation through the optic of conflicting obligations between treaties, as well as, to a lesser extent, between a treaty and another source of law. The chapter proceeds in three parts. Part I reviews the causes of normative conflict. Part II examines the various ways a treaty can conflict with another treaty or source of law. Part III surveys different techniques for addressing normative conflict via conflict avoidance clauses, treaty interpretation, the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, and the classic canons of treaty construction (lex prior, lex posterior, and lex specialis). The chapter concludes with a discussion of the broader theme concerning international law’s systemic fragmentation.

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