Whether “Military” and “Peaceful” Are Synonymous in Light of the Outer Space Treaty

Mukund Thirumalai Srikanth

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17304/ijil.vol8.2.259

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Considering the potential for the use and exploration of outer space, it was essential that there existed a regulatory mechanism to control the activities of man in outer space. The Outer Space Treaty, 1967 (hereinafter referred to as the “OST”), aimed at extending the principles of international law, especially the laws with respect to the use of weapons, into outer space. The author, in the course of this paper will take into consideration certain significant issues pertaining to the use of outer space for military purposes, primarily in light of the OST and certain United Nations General Assembly Resolutions. This paper focuses on the thin line separating peaceful and military purposes and the unfortunate militarisation of outer space due to the gaping loop hole in the Treaty. The paper also intends to evaluate whether the existing legal framework still leaves outer space inefficiently regulated and open to use for purposes that are peaceful, yet military. The author would like to suggest certain amendments to the existing OST that might achieve the objectives of the enactment.

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