Sovereign States have always been reluctant to recognize wide interpretations of the right to the self-determination: they see in them a dangerous thread against their own political unity. The present paper argues that the recognition of the right to external self-determination encompasses other cases beyond the decolonization processes. It explores the path taken by some prominent international law scholars such as Antonio Cassese according to whom the right to external self-determination might emerge once the accommodation of a particular national people within a larger sovereign state is frustrated. The paper explores to what extent such doctrine might be applicable to the Catalans' present situation considering both that the holding of a referendum on secession is severely repressed by the Spanish constitutional system and that, nonetheless, the celebration of a referendum on Catalan’s independence is supported by a large majority of the Catalan citizenry.
Our next Annual Conference will take place from July 6-9, 2021. It will be held in a completely novel way as a fully online Conference: ICON•S Mundo. Stay tuned.
The Call for Papers for ICON•S Mundo is now closed. Successful applicants will be notified by the end of May.
Log in to access your ICON•S account.Log In