The International Arbitration of Territorial Disputes

Research output: Book/ReportBook


Asaf Siniver provides a systematic and comparative analysis of the role of international arbitration in the settlement of interstate territorial disputes. He engages with International Relations (IR) and International Law (IL) scholarships to locate the unique characteristics of arbitration as a legal method of dispute settlement, distinct from the other legal method of adjudication ('judicial settlement') and diplomatic methods such as negotiation and mediation.

A novel framework examines both political and legal dimensions to analyse (i) under what conditions states are more likely to pursue a legal settlement of their territorial dispute via arbitration as opposed to the more popular diplomatic method of mediation, and (ii) what explains compliance with, or defiance of international law in such cases. In so doing, the author sets to reclaim the sui generis nature of arbitration as a unique legal-political method which enables the disputants to maintain the considerable flexibility and autonomy often found in mediation, whilst providing the same final and legally binding solution that adjudication offers.

Exploring a wide range of primary sources, including interviews, archival research, and official documents, and employing qualitative research methods, Siniver applies the analytical framework to four contemporary cases of international arbitration: the arbitration over the Rann of Kutch between India and Pakistan (1966-68); the Beagle Channel arbitration between Chile and Argentina (1971-77), the Taba arbitration between Egypt and Israel (1986-88), and the South China Sea arbitration between The Philippines and China (2013-16).
Original languageEnglish
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages256
ISBN (Electronic)9780191913075
ISBN (Print)9780198870203
Publication statusPublished - 20 Jun 2024


  • conflict resolution
  • international law
  • arbitration
  • mediation
  • territorial disputes
  • diplomacy
  • International Relations
  • conflict management
  • dispute settlement
  • negotiations


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