Open Access Open Access  Restricted Access Subscription or Fee Access

From Coexistence to Cooperation? The Dynamics of China’s Legal Approach to the United Nations and Shanghai Cooperation Organisation

Nicusor Sever Cosmin Florea

Abstract


This article analyses China’s dynamic legal approach to multilateralism with regard to an international organisation (United Nations - UN) and a regional organisation (Shanghai Cooperation Organisation - SCO), showcasing how international normative crystallization influenced China's views on multilateralism and determined her evolution from a reluctant actor to an active supporter of multilateralism and a facilitator between regional (SCO) and international organisations (UN).

China’s engagement with the United Nations has been the country’s perhaps most distinguishing feature regarding her approach of the international normative order. After discussing whether and to what degree of extent China could be considered a contributor to the "International Rule of Law", the article moves on to identify how China solved the inherent conflict between her Westphalian views on sovereignty and her role in the UN Security Council (UNSC). While providing multiple examples on China's practice in the UNSC, the study finds out that, despite having crossed various stages in her approach to the UNSC, China's respect for sovereignty continues to remain constant in her international legal practice. Finally, China's role as a facilitator between the SCO and UNSC is analysed to showcase how, despite attaching paramount importance to national sovereignty, China became a catalyst of multilateral cooperation.

In the light of China’s legal practice, the study concludes that a new stage in China's relation with International Law could be envisaged and such an evolution would not weaken, but consolidate, both the UN and SCO.


Keywords


China and International Law; United Nations Security Council; Shanghai Cooperation Organisation; Multilateral Cooperation

Full Text:

PDF

References


Reference List

International Legislation

Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against the Safety of Civil Aviation, Montreal, September 23, 1971

Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against the Safety of Maritime Navigation, Rome, March 10, 1988

Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Seizure of Aircraft, Hague, December 16, 1970

Convention on Offences and Certain Other Acts Committed On Board Aircraft, Tokyo, September 14, 1963

Convention on the Marking of Plastic Explosives for the Purpose of Detection, signed at Montreal, March 1, 1991

Convention on the Physical Protection of Nuclear Material, Vienna, March 3, 1980 (amended in 2016)

Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Crimes against Internationally Protected Persons, including Diplomatic Agents, New

York, December 14, 1973

International Convention Against the Taking of Hostages, New York, December 17, 1979

International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism, New York, April 13, 2005

International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Bombings, New York, December 15, 1997

International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism, New York, December 9, 1999

International Court of Justice (ICJ), Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (Bosnia and Herzegovina v. Serbia and Montenegro), July 11, 1996

International Court of Justice (ICJ), Concerning the Legal Consequences of a Wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory (Israel v. State of Palestine), Advisory Opinion, July 9, 2004

International Court of Justice (ICJ), Conditions of Admission of a State to Membership in the United nations (Art. 4 of the Charter), Advisory Opinion, ICJ Reports 1947-1948

Protocol for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against the Safety of Fixed Platforms Located on the Continental Shelf, Rome, March 10, 1988

Protocol on the Suppression of Unlawful Acts of Violence at Airports Serving International Civil Aviation, supplementary to the Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against the Safety of Civil Aviation, Montreal, February 24, 1988

The Charter of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation, signed in June 2002, entered into force on September 19, 2003

UN Commission on Human Rights, Report of the Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms while countering terrorism, Martin SCHEININ, UN Doc E/CN.4/2006/98, December 28, 2005

UN Department of Public Information, Security Council Fails to Adopt Draft Resolution on Syria as Russian Federation, China Veto Text Supporting Arab League’s Proposed Peace Plan, UNSC, 6711th meeting, February 4, 2012, UN Doc SC/ 10536

UN Doc A/59/141 of 2004

UN Doc A/RES/59/48 of 2004

UN Doc S/PV.1660 of 1972

UN Doc S/PV.1662 of 1972

UN Doc S/PV.3730 of 1997

UN Doc S/PV.3868 of 1998

UN Doc S/PV.3937 of 1998

UN Doc S/PV.3982 of 1999

UN Doc S/PV.3988 of 1999

UN Doc S/PV.4000 of 1999

UN Doc S/PV.5015 of 2004

UN Doc S/PV.6498 of 2011

UN Doc S/RES/1272 of 1999

UN Doc S/RES/1556 of 2004

UN Doc S/RES/1593 of 2005

UN Doc S/RES/1631 of 2005

UN Doc S/RES/1769 of 2007

UN Doc S/RES/1970 of 2011

UN Doc S/RES/1973 of 2011

UN Doc S/RES/1973 of 2011

UN Doc S/RES/2009 of 2011

UN Doc S/RES/2016 of 2011

UN Doc S/RES/2017 of 2011

UN Doc S/RES/2022 of 2011

UN Doc S/RES/2040 of 2012

UN Doc S/RES/776 of 1992

UN Doc S/RES/836 of 1993

UN Doc S/RES/929 of 1994

UN Doc S/RES/958 of 1994

UN General Assembly, Declaration of the High-level Meeting of the General Assembly on the Rule of Law at the National and International Levels, November 30, 2012, A/RES/67/1

UN Rule of Law Coordination and Resource Group, available at https://www.unodc.org/unodc/en/justice-and-prison-reform/interagency.html, as retrieved on February 19, 2017

UN Secretary-General, Report of the Secretary-General on the Rule of Law and Transitional Justice in Conflict and Post Conflict Societies, Doc S/2004/616

UNSC Resolution 1249 of 1999 with regard to Nauru

UNSC Resolution 1290/ 2000 with regard to Tuvalu

UNSC Resolution 502 of 1982 with regard to the immediate cessation and withdrawal of all Argentine forces from the Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)

UNSC Resolution 660 of 1990 with regard to Iraq - Kuwait

UNSC Resolution 688 of 1991 with regard to Iraq

Monographs, Journal and Newspaper Articles, On-line resources

***, China’s Xi Proposes Security Concept for Asia, China Today, May 22, 2014, available at http://www.chinatoday.com.cn/english/news/2014-05/22/content_620347.htm as retrieved on November 7, 2018

***, China's Position Paper on the New Security Concept, Foreign Ministry of People's Republic of China, available at http://www.fmprc.gov.cn/ce/ceun/eng/xw/t27742.htm, as retrieved on November 8, 2018

***, Human Rights in China, Counter-Terrorism and Human Rights: the Impact of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization, 2011, available at http://www.hrichina.org/sites/default/files/publication_pdfs/2011-hric-sco-whitepaper-full.pdf

ALLOTT, Philip, Towards the International Rule of Law: Essays in Integrated Constitutional Theory, Cameron May, London, 2005

BATES, Stubbins, Terrorism and International Law: Accountability, Remedies, and Reform. A Report of the IBA Task Force on Terrorism, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2011

BELLAMY, Alex J., Libya and the Responsibility to Protect: The Exception and the Norm, Ethics & International Affairs, Vol. 25, No. 3, 2011

BUCHANAN, Allen, KEOHANE, Robert O., The Legitimacy of Global Governance Institutions, Ethics & International Affairs, Vol. 20, No. 4, 2006

CARON, David D., The Legitimacy of the Collective Authority of the Security Council, American Journal of International Law, Vol. 87, No. 4, 1993

CHESTERMAN, Simon, An International Rule of Law?, American Journal of Comparative Law Vol. 56, No. 2, 2008

DAVIS, Michael C., The Reluctant Intervenor: The UN Security Council, China’s Worldview, and Humanitarian Intervention in DAVIS, Michael C.,

DIETRICH, Wolfgang, SCHOLDAN, International Intervention in the Post-Cold War World: Moral Responsibility and Power Politics, M.E. Sharpe, Armon, 2004

FOOT, Rosemary, The Responsibility to Protect (R2P) and its Evolution: Beijing’s Influence on Norm Creation in Humanitarian Areas, St Antony’s International Review, Vol. 6, No. 2, 2011

HEHIR, Aidan, The Permanence of Inconsistency: Libya, the Security Council, and the Responsibility to Protect, International Security, Vol. 38, No. 1, 2013

HIGGINS, Rosalyn, The Place of International Law in the Settlement of Disputes by the Security Council, American Journal of International Law, Vol. 64, No. 1, 1970

HU, Qian, Chinese Practice in Public International Law: 2002, Chinese Journal of International Law, Vol. 2, No. 2, 2003

JOHNSTON, Alastair Iain, Treating International Institutions as Social Environments, International Studies Quarterly, Vol. 45, No. 4, 2001

KENT, Ann, China’s International Socialization: The Role of International Organizations, Global Governance , Vol. 8, No. 3, 2002

KIM, Samuel S., China, the United Nations, and World Order, Princeton University Press, Princeton, 1979

KOSKENNIEMI, Martti, The Place of Law in Collective Security, Michigan Journal of International Law, Vol. 17, No 2, 1996

LI, Baodong, Chinese Mission to the United Nations, Explanation of Vote by China's Ambassador to UN after Vote on Security Council Draft Resolution on Syria, February 5, 2012, available at http://www.fmprc.gov.cn/eng/zxxx/t901714.htm, as retrieved on October 23, 2018

LIANG, Yuen-Li, The Settlement of Disputes in the Security Council: The Yalta Voting Formula, British Year Book of International Law , Vol. 24, 1947

MORPHET, Sally, China as a Permanent Member of the Security Council: October 1971-December 1999, Security Dialogue, Vol. 31, No. 2, 2000, p. 151

MULLER, Wim, China’s sovereignty in international Law: from historical grievance to pragmatic tool, China-EU Law Journal Vol. 1 No. 3-4, 2013

O’NEILL, Barry, Power and Satisfaction in the United Nations Security Council, Journal of Conflict Resolution, Vol. 40, No. 2, 1996, p. 233

SAUL, Ben, Defining Terrorism in International Law, Oxford University Press, Oxford, 2006

SCEATS, Sonya, BRESLIN, Shaun, China and the International Human Rights System, Chatham House, October 2012

SIMMA, Bruno, From Bilateralism to Community Interest in International Law, Hague Academy of International Law, Recueil des Cours, Vol. 250, 1994

TALMON, Stefan, The Security Council as World Legislature, American Journal of International Law, Vol. 99, No. 1, 2005

VAGTS, Detlev F., Hegemonic International Law, American Journal of International Law, Vol. 95, No. 4, 2001

WAN, Ming, Human Rights in Chinese Foreign Relations: Defining and Defending National Interests, University of Pennsylvania Press, Philadelphia, 2001

WANG, Tieya, International Law in China: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives, 221 Recueil Des Cours, The Hague Academy of International law, Brill Nijhoff, 1990

WELSH, Jennifer, Civilian Protection in Libya: Putting Coercion and Controversy Back into RtoP, Ethics & International Affairs, Vol. 25, No. 3, 2011

YU, Jiang (Foreign Ministry Spokesman), Remarks on the Death of Gaddafi's Son and Others in NATO's Air Strikes, May 2, 2011, China's Ministry of Foreign Affairs Website, available on http://www.mfa.gov.cn/eng/xwfw/s2510/2535/t819910.htm, as retrieved of September 17, 2018




DOI: https://doi.org/10.14666/2194-7759-7-2-004

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.




"Journal Global Policy and Governance" ISSN online 2194-7740 / ISSN print 2194-7759

All publishing rigths reserved to © Transition Academia Press. Executive editor: Prof. Dr. Giorgio Dominese