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Leonhardsen, E (2020). Pride and Perseverance: Strategic Use of Rebus Sic Stantibus in Russian Foreign Policy 1870 – 1950. German Yearbook of International Law, 63(1), 581-620. https://doi.org/10.3790/gyil.63.1.581
Leonhardsen, Erlend M. (2020). "Pride and Perseverance: Strategic Use of Rebus Sic Stantibus in Russian Foreign Policy 1870 – 1950" German Yearbook of International Law, vol. 63no. 1, 2020 pp. 581-620. https://doi.org/10.3790/gyil.63.1.581
Leonhardsen, E (2020). Pride and Perseverance: Strategic Use of Rebus Sic Stantibus in Russian Foreign Policy 1870 – 1950. German Yearbook of International Law, Vol. 63 (Issue 1), pp 581-620. https://doi.org/10.3790/gyil.63.1.581

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Pride and Perseverance: Strategic Use of Rebus Sic Stantibus in Russian Foreign Policy 1870 – 1950

Leonhardsen, Erlend M.

German Yearbook of International Law, Vol. 63 (2020), Iss. 1 : pp. 581–620

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Erlend M. Leonhardsen, LLM University of Oslo (2008) and Georgetown University (2009). Legal Adviser at EFTA Surveillance Authority, Brussels.

Abstract

The paper examines the use of rebus sic stantibus, a claim that a fundamental change of circumstances warrants withdrawal or termination of a treaty, by Russia in three key episodes in Russian foreign policy. These episodes have not been examined together by scholars and have not all been analysed from the perspective of rebus sic stantibus. First, it examines the situation in 1870 when Russia used this approach to obtain the London Declaration, which revised unfavourable terms in the 1856 Treaty of Paris following the Crimean War. Second, it examines the Soviet attempt to terminate or renegotiate the Montreux Convention during and in the aftermath of the Second World War through the use of rebus sic stantibus and, third, it examines the Soviet attempt to renegotiate the Svalbard Treaty through the use of this legal approach. Notably, the analysis shows that these attempts took place during shifts in Russia’s relative power. Given the design of the treaties in question, rebus sic stantibus was one of the only ways to achieve these goals. In addition to providing a thorough study of episodes unexamined from an international legal perspective, the paper may therefore shed light on when rebus sic stantibus is useful and why it is relied on less and less by states today.

Table of Contents

Section Title Page Action Price
Erlend M. Leonhardsen\nPride and Perseverance: Strategic Use of Rebus Sic Stantibus in Russian Foreign Policy 1870–1950 581
I. Introduction 581
II. Rebus Sic Stantibus: A Legal and Historical Overview 584
A. Introduction 584
B. Rebus Sic Stantibus in Historic Perspective 587
C. A Contemporary Overview 589
III. Understanding When States Use Rebus Sic Stantibus: A Dynamic Relational Approach 581
A. Introduction 581
B. The Beginning: The 1871 London Conference 581
C. The Aftermath of the London Conference to the Russian Revolution and the Interwar Period 581
D. Revolutionary Rags to Riches: Renegotiating the Montreux Convention and the Svalbard Treaty 582
1. Soviet and the Montreux Convention 582
2. Soviet and the Svalbard Treaty 582
IV. The Russian Exit and Renegotiation Strategy Through Rebus Sic Stantibus 583