Sovereignty, Colonialism and the 'State' of Palestine Under International Law

32 Pages Posted: 26 Sep 2010

See all articles by John Reynolds

John Reynolds

National University of Ireland, Maynooth

Date Written: June 13, 2009


In the wake of the respective contentions put forward by Israel and the Palestinians in the context of 'Operation Cast Lead', this paper seeks to revisit the debates regarding Palestinian statehood that simmered in international legal circles following the 1988 Declaration of Independence, and the signing of the Oslo Accords in the mid-1990s. In considering the matter, a number of questions beg; not least regarding over which territory or territories the purported Palestinian state is constituted, who the representative authorities of that state are, how a ‘state’ is construed in international law, and for what purpose. The paper accordingly looks at the concepts of statehood and sovereignty in international law and considers their application in the Palestinian context.

Note: Downloadable document is in English and French.

Keywords: Palestine, Statehood, Sovereignty, International Law, International Criminal Court, Israel, Occupation, Colonialism

JEL Classification: K33

Suggested Citation

Reynolds, John, Sovereignty, Colonialism and the 'State' of Palestine Under International Law (June 13, 2009). Available at SSRN: or

John Reynolds (Contact Author)

National University of Ireland, Maynooth ( email )

Maynooth, County Kildare

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