52 Japanese Y.B. Int'l L. 101 (2009)
The Use of Force to Prevent the Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons

handle is hein.journals/jpyintl52 and id is 113 raw text is: 101

Christine Gray*
I. The Legal Framework
1. lus ad bellum and Nuclear Weapons
2. The Use of Force to Prevent the Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons
II. Failure to Invoke International Law in Justification of the Use of Force
1. Israel's Attack on the Iraqi Nuclear Reactor (1981)
2. Israel's Attack on Syria (2003)
3. Israel's Attack on Syria (2007)
III. Pre-Emptive Action to Prevent the Acquisition of Nuclear Weapons
by Iran
1. Iran's Nuclear Programme
2. The Possible Use of Force against Iran
3. The Role of the Security Council
In September 2007 an obscure episode involving the use of force occurred in
the Middle East. Public understanding of this event is still very limited. There was
an air attack on a target in Syria. At first no-one admitted responsibility, but it
emerged that Israel had carried out the raid.' Israel did not offer any legal justifi-
cation; it did not report its use of force to the Security Council under Article 51 of
the UN Charter. There was almost no international response.2 Syria protested about
the Israeli incursion into its airspace, but initially made no public acknowledgement
that there had been an attack rather than just a violation of its airspace.' It was not
Professor of International Law, University of Cambridge, UK.
Keesing's Record of World Events, Vol. 53 (2007), pp. 48164, 48224 (hereafter, Keesings).
2 Richard Weitz, Israeli Airstrike in Syria: International Reactions, November 1, 2007,
James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies, available at <http://cns.miis.edu/stories/
It said In flagrant violation of international law, the UN Charter and the resolutions of
the Security Council, the Israeli air force, after midnight on 6 September 2007, committed
a breach of the airspace of the Syrian Arab Republic crossing its northern frontier .... As
the Israeli aircraft were departing they dropped some munitions but without managing to

Japanese Yearbook of International Law
Vol. 52 (2009), pp. 101-126.

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