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A fundamental objective of the modern international legal order, which is founded upon the Charter of the United Nations, is the maintenance of international peace and security. The Charter contains at least 35 references to “peace” as a sought state of international relations and a value protected by international law, 1 and its derivations (e.g., “peaceful”, “pacifi c”, “peace-loving”) are mentioned in at least nine further Articles of the Charter. 2 To reinforce international peace and security, Article 2(4) of the Charter laid down a stringent restriction on the use of force in international relations, an obligation which was, from its inception, designed to be of a superior legal nature 3 and is now recognised to have acquired the character of customary international law and even that of jus cogens . Notably, Professor Peter Malanczuk suggests that this norm is now binding even for the few States which are not members of the United Nations. 4

* Sergey Sayapin is a Dr. iur. candidate at the Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin’s Chair for German and International Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure and Contemporary Legal History. The author invites readers to send comments on this contribution to: [email protected] 1 Charter of the United Nations, reprinted in: Malcolm D. Evans (ed.), Blackstone’s International Law Documents , 4th edition (London: Blackstone Press Ltd., 1999), at 8-26, Preamble, paras. 5, 6, Articles 1(1, 2), 2(3, 6), 11(1, 2, 3), 12(2), 15(1), 18(1), 23(1), 24(1), 26, 33(1), 34, 37(2), 39, 42, 43(1), 47(1), 48(1), 51, 52(1), 54, 73, 76, 84, 99, 106. 2 Ibid ., Articles 1(1), 2(3), 4(1), 14, 33(1), 35(2), 38, 52(2, 3), 55. 3 Ibid ., Art. 103: “In the event of a confl ict between the obligations of the Members of the United Nations under the present Charter and their obligations under any other international agreement, their obligations under the present Charter shall prevail.” 4 Malanczuk, P., Akehurst’s Modern Introduction to International Law , 7th edition (London and New York: Routledge, 1997), at 309. In turn, A. Randelzhofer specifi es that States which are not members of the United Nations “are protected, though not bound” by Article 2(4). See Randelzhofer, A., “Article 2(4)”, in Simma, B. (ed.), The Charter of the United Nations: A Commentary (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1994), at 115.