Asian Institute of Research, Journal Publication, Journal Academics, Education Journal, Asian Institute
Asian Institute of Research, Journal Publication, Journal Academics, Education Journal, Asian Institute

Law and Humanities
Quarterly Reviews

ISSN 2827-9735

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 Scales of Justice
City Crowds
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doi
open access

Published: 29 October 2022

The Principle of Common Heritage of Mankind in the Law of Outer Space

Chi Eric Nnadozie, Ibrahim Sule

University of Calabar, University of Utara Malaysia

asia institute of research, journal of education, education journal, education quarterly reviews, education publication, education call for papers
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doi

10.31014/aior.1996.01.04.35

Pages: 64-75

Keywords: Law of Outer Space, International Law, Property Rights, Common Heritage and Province of Mankind

Abstract

Nomadic primitive men were in constant quest for food and water. With sparse population, they rarely encountered other humans. Chance meetings were greeted with confrontations over food and water, the basic essentials for survival. With the passage of time, life became easier when humans transited from hunting to farming. No longer in perpetual pursuit of food and water, civilization and property ownership commenced. Prior to the advent of international law, conquering land seemed simple: the fittest survived and won the land. The victor’s flag flapped majestically in the air above the conquered territory as a symbol of acquisition. No rules existed to ensure fairness. Superior armies seized land or those skilled in the exploration declared new unoccupied areas for their kingdoms. For a millennium, homo sapiens followed this savagery and barbaric “first in time, first in right” rule of property ownership. Haven conquered the earth, the inordinate expansionist tendencies of man have shifted his attention to the outer space, an area devoid of the obnoxious “first in time, first in right rule”. Rather, the order of the day in this sphere is the doctrine of “common heritage and province of mankind”. What is it all about? What is the genesis of the doctrine? Is it absolute and sacrosanct? Or is it a case of all animals are equal, but some are more equal than others”. All these will be unraveled as we explore the topic in this exercise.

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