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May 29 , 2009

The Law and Politics of the Kosovo Advisory Opinion


This volume is an edited collection of essays on various aspects of the 2010 Kosovo Advisory Opinion of the International Court of Justice. The main theme of the book is the interplay between law and politics regarding Kosovos independence generally and the advisory opinion specifically. How and why did the Court become the battleground in which Kosovos independence was to be fought out (or not)? How and why did political arguments in favour of Kosovosindependence (e.g. that Kosovo was a unique, sui generis case which set no precedent for other secessionist territories) change in the formal, legal setting of advisory proceedings before the Court? How and why did states supporting either Kosovo or Serbia choose to frame their arguments? How did the Courtperceive them? What did the Court want to achieve, and did it succeed in doing so? And how was the opinion received, and what broader implications did it have so far? These are the questions that the book hopes to shed some light on. To do so, the editors assembled a stellar cast of contributors, many of whom acted as counsel or advisors in the case, as well a number of eminent scholars of politics and international relations whose pieces further enrich the book and give it an interdisciplinaryangle. The book thus tells the story of the case, places it within its broader political context, and so attempts to advance our understanding of how such cases are initiated, litigated and decided, and what broader purposes they may or may not serve.
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