Remedial secession as a federal phenomenon
Riga Graduate School of Law
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The research is specifically focused on federal states since their system of governance illustrates a symbiosis between the classical state paradigm and the autonomy of its subjects. In particular, it is argued that peoples inhabiting respective federal units possess a right to remedial secession due to the fact that the whole existence of the state who claims authority over them is based upon the consent of those peoples to give up a certain portion of autonomy to the sovereign. In this case, a remedy for an unauthorized exercise of state power should in a normative sense be provided by federal constitutional law. For the purposes of this research, four case studies of secession of federal units are selected as exemplary state practice in the case of gross human rights violations: Bangladesh, Chechnya, South Carolina and Kosovo. While circumstances of each case provide for different criteria to be met for the secession to qualify as remedial, a number of prevalent features appear throughout all four cases. Specifically, remedial secession calls for existence of a humanitarian crisis that has emerged from systematic human rights violations at different levels and a clear breach of competence to exercise authority by the federal sovereign.