Argument: The threat or use of nuclear weapons is legal in desperate defense

Issue Report: Abolition of nuclear weapons


  • In 1996, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled, “in view of the current state of international law, and of the elements of fact at its disposal, the Court cannot conclude definitively whether the threat or use of nuclear weapons would be lawful or unlawful in an extreme circumstance of self-defence, in which the very survival of a state would be at stake.”[1]