Global Constitutional Strategies to Counter-Secession

In contrast to the prevailing approach, my theoretical and empirical work on “Secession and the Prevalence of Both Militant Democracy and Eternity Clauses Worldwide” published in the Cardozo Law Review in 2018 suggests that the overwhelming majority of world constitutions, including the constitutions of the overwhelming majority of democratic and semi-democratic states, prohibit secession in explicit but indirect manners. In that work, I analyze the different constitutional treatments of secession existing in 192 constitutions of states that are members of the UN and the empirical findings regarding their prevalence. In this paper, I argue that as long as states need the combination of citizens and territory to exist, both international and constitutional law will most likely continue to ban secession outside decolonization or foreign occupation contexts. The paper is part of a collection of essays on STRATEGIES OF SECESSION AND COUNTER-SECESSION (Griffiths & Muro eds, 2020).