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On Evolution of the Relationship between National Interests and International Law
Author(s): 
Pages: 33-48+156-157
Year: Issue:  5
Journal: World Economics and Politics

Keyword:  national interestsinternational lawevolution of relationshipnational self-determinationmajor power relations;
Abstract: The relationship between national interests and international law is closely linked with both the "moral evolution" of international law and the process of intemational law becoming "a law of acceptability of sovereignties".From the "moral" perspective,ancient and modem international laws were at a very early stage,or that they were just the low standards of ethical norms.This kind of international law was a tool for powerful nation to plunder the weak,which is conducive to the expansion of strong nations’ interests,but in conflict with the national interests of the weak.Only when the United Nations charter designated sovereign equality principle and all countries should comply with it,has the international law truly become "a law of acceptability of sovereignties".At this time,for major powerful nations,international law is mainly a result of the balance of interests between them,which tended to stabilize the international structure and order system led by them;for the weak,international law became the main tool to protect their right to survive and develop.Then,the relationship between the national interest and the contemporary system of international law,or the relationship of international laws as a whole,became a new one.
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