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Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law [MPEPIL]

Biafra Conflict

Henning Lahmann

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved.date: 24 June 2024

Subject(s):
States, independence — Sovereignty — Jurisdiction of states, territoriality principle — Secession — Genocide — Ethnic cleansing — Internally displaced persons

Published under the auspices of the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law under the direction of Professor Anne Peters (2021–) and Professor Rüdiger Wolfrum (2004–2020). 

1 Biafra was the name of the eastern State of the Nigerian federation after it had unilaterally declared its independence on 30 May 1967. The secessionist entity derived its name from the bight of Biafra (or Bonny), south of the Niger Delta. The so-called ‘Republic of Biafra’ existed until 15 January 1970, when it rejoined the federation after it had lost the Nigerian civil war that had broken out shortly after the proclamation of independence.2 After gaining independence from the British Empire on 1 October 1960, Nigeria constituted itself as a federation on the...
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