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Québec's right to independence according to Canada Supreme Court

Québec's right to secession according to the Supreme Court.

EXTRACTS FROM this judgement from Canada Supreme Court:
Date: 1998-08-20
Case number: 25506

Lamer, Antonio; L'Heureux-Dubé, Claire; Gonthier, Charles
Doherty; Cory, Peter deCarteret; McLachlin, Beverley; Iacobucci, Frank;
Major, John C.; Bastarache, Michel; Binnie, William Ian Corneil

(b) The Right of a People to Self-determination

While INTERNATIONAL LAW generally regulates the conduct of nation states, it does, in some specific circumstances, also recognize the "rights" of entities other than nation states -- such as the right of a people to self-determination.

The existence of the right of a people to self-determination is now SO WIDELY RECOGNIZED in international conventions that the principle has acquired a status beyond "convention" and is considered a GENERAL PRINCIPLE of international law.

Accordingly, the general state of international law with respect to the right to self-determination is that the right operates within the overriding protection granted to the territorial integrity of "parent" states. However, as noted by Cassese, supra, at p. 334, there are certain defined contexts within which the right to the self-determination of peoples does allow that right to be exercised "externally", which, in the context of this Reference, would potentially mean secession:

. . . (EXCEPT...) the right to external self-determination (independence) has only been bestowed upon two classes of peoples: those under colonial rule (AS FOR QUÉBEC) OR foreign occupation, based upon the assumption that both classes make up entities that are inherently distinct from thecolonialist Power and the occupant Power and that their 'territorial integrity', all but destroyed by the colonialist or occupying Power, should be fully restored. . . .
132 The right of colonial peoples to exercise their right to self-determination by breaking away from the "imperial" power is now UNDISPUTED.

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