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refusal to intervene, esp the abstention by a state from intervening in the affairs of other states or in its own internal disputes
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a fundamental principle of present-day international law that obliges every state not to interfere in any way in the internal affairs of any other state, not to impose its own social or governmental order or its ideology on any other state, and to respect the sovereignty of all other states. Nonintervention is an important condition for peaceful coexistence and cooperation among nations.

The principle of nonintervention was laid down by the revolutionary bourgeoisie during the Great French Revolution to counter attempts by the European monarchies to reestablish the monarchical system in France through armed intervention. But the bourgeoisie defended these principles only to the extent that it found them suitable. The wars of the Directory and especially of Napoleonic France and the entire policy that underlay them demonstrated that the bourgeoisie defies or flouts its own proclaimed principles whenever self-interest dictates. The Holy Alliance, which was formed in 1815 after the fall of Napoleon for the purpose of defending feudal absolutist regimes and suppressing revolutionary and national liberation movements, made intervention in the domestic affairs of other states its official policy for many years.

The position taken by the United States on the question of the principles of relations between the countries of Europe and America, which was declared in 1823 and came to be called the Monroe Doctrine, was formally directed against the threat of intervention in Latin America by the Holy Alliance. But in reality, as its actual application demonstrated, the Monroe Doctrine became the basis of the US claim to unhindered intervention in the domestic affairs of Latin American countries. The most flagrant violation of the principle of nonintervention was the armed intervention organized by the imperialist powers against the young Soviet state. This intervention was in fact supported by the League of Nations, which was formed after World War I. During the Spanish People’s National Revolutionary War (1936–39), the Western powers connived with intervention by fascist Germany and Italy against the Spanish Republic but hid behind an ostensible policy of nonintervention. This policy of collusion with fascist aggression, which was clearly expressed in the Munich Agreement of 1938, encouraged the preparation of the subsequent aggression against the USSR.

The UN Charter, which took effect in October 1945, sees nonintervention as one of the most important principles underlying the actions of the UN and its members (par. 7, art. 2). At the same time, the possibility of applying military and nonmilitary sanctions against a state whose actions represent a threat to peace, a disruption of peace, or an act of aggression is recognized, even if such sanctions intrude into the sphere of internal jurisdiction of this state (arts. 39–42).

Despite the UN Charter and numerous UN resolutions, the principle of nonintervention has been violated many times by the imperialist powers in support of the forces of domestic reaction in a number of countries. The methods of direct armed intervention are frequently employed as for example in the imperialist interventions in Korea, Guatemala, Lebanon, Jordan, Cuba, Vietnam, Cambodia, and Laos.

The USSR and the other socialist states have consistently fought for adherence to the principle of nonintervention. At the 20th session of the UN General Assembly (September-December 1965), the USSR initiated the Declaration on the Inadmissibility of Intervention in the Domestic Affairs of States and the Protection of Their Independence and Sovereignty, which was adopted by the Assembly. The principle of nonintervention is invariably included in interstate agreements signed by the socialist countries.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Lower incidence of chikungunya virus infection in the intervention compared with nonintervention communities occurred in the context of tenfold lower mosquito densities in the intervention areas with AGO traps.
The issue of nonintervention emerged as a central issue of contention at the Bandung Conference, but there was no hint of anyone using nonintervention to mask human rights abuses at home.
Intraoperative complications included maternal supraventricular tachycardia, change from cephalic to breech presentation, bladder lesions, epidural block failure, and termination of the anaesthetic effect prior to the end of surgery; these complications predominated in the nonintervention group.
In 2009, a total of 18 intervention nurseries and 18 nonintervention nurseries from the 4 provinces were included in the study.
Principles of nonintervention and intervention have been justified in various ways.
"Preintervention" was used to denote the first assessment period, in which data were collected for both intervention and nonintervention participants.
While the notion of absolute sovereignty may need some reinterpretation--intervention may sometimes be warranted on humanitarian grounds to prevent genocide, for example--Hehir said the United States should be slow to abandon the principle of nonintervention in the affairs of other nations.
In May 1997, no statistically significant difference existed between the ages of students at the nonintervention school (13.02) and the intervention school (13.00) (Table 2).
instilled in his offspring a keen understanding of his own philosophy of government, which McManus describes as "the dominant canons of the "Old Right," meaning "nonintervention in the affairs of other nations ...
She threatens to expose the U.N.'s "nonintervention" course.
One inevitably wonders, then, about the artist's nonintervention in the dispute, her retreat behind the camera whose presence substitutes for her verbal participation.
The program, which focused on intensified hand-washing, using an alcohol-based oily disinfectant, keeping the day care centers dean, and washing toys regularly, led to a 9% reduction in infections in children 3 years and younger, compared with children at a nonintervention center, the investigators said.