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Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law [MPEPIL]

Soft Law

Daniel Thürer

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved.date: 21 May 2024

Soft law — Sovereignty — Customary international law — Opinio juris

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 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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