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RAWLS John
The Law of Peoples (with The Idea of Public Reason Revisited)
2nd printing. Hardcover, dj, 199 pp., notes, index.
By 'Law of Peoples', Rawls means "a particular political conception of right and justice that applies to the principles and norms of international law and practice" (p. 3). This political conception of justice is arrived at through the device of the 'original position' – a hypothetical arrangement whereby representatives of each of the peoples get together with the aim of determining principles that will govern the terms of their association. The principles yielded by this process make up the content of the Law of Peoples. The eight principles are:

"Peoples (as organized by their government) are free and independent, and their freedom and independence is to be respected by other peoples."
"Peoples are equal and parties to their own agreements."
"Peoples have the right of self-defense but no right to war."
"Peoples are to observe a duty of non-intervention."
"Peoples are to observe treaties and undertakings."
"Peoples are to observe certain specified restrictions on the conduct of war (assumed to be in self-defense)."
"Peoples are to honor human rights."
"Peoples have a duty to assist other peoples living under unfavorable conditions that prevent their having a just or decent political and social regime."
€ 12.5

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