International Reaction to Catalonia: Possible Consequences for International Law


Faculty of Law, University of Bucharest

Abstract: This study aims at briefly examining the international reactions to the unilateral declaration of independence with respect to Catalonia, in order to identify possible trends or evolutions in international law. The article departs from the assumption that two main theories have been proposed with respect to the international law applicable to secession attempts and tries to identify elements that may support one theory or the other. The main aspects that will be looked upon when studying the reactions of States shall be references to: territorial integrity and sovereignty, conformity with the Constitution and the domestic laws, and the rule of law.

Keywords: Catalonia, secession, recognition, territorial integrity, rule of law.

*Ion Gâlea is Senior Lecturer in Public International Law and International Organizations at the Faculty of Law of the University of Bucharest. He held the position of director general for legal affairs (legal advisor) within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Romania between 2010 and 2016. Since 2016, he is the Ambassador of Romania to the Republic of Bulgaria. The opinions expressed in this paper solely the author’s and do not engage the institutions he belongs to.

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