Disruption of territorial integrity

Other Names:
Denial of rights to territorial integrity

The integrity of territory, particularly a small one, may be disrupted when the territory is separated legally, administratively and politically from the larger territory of which it was a part. Equally disruptive is the partial or complete replacement of the original population of a territory by immigrants, the demands of whose descendents must be considered along with those of the legitimate indigenous inhabitants. In another sense, a downstream riparian state may also consider that its territorial integrity has been disrupted when an upstream state reduces the quantity of the river flow or changes its quality.


In the case of small territories, the problem is mainly a heritage from the past and is likely to be replaced by the problem of territorial fragmentation. Examples include: claim of Spain against the UK concerning the status of Gibraltar; claim of Morocco against Spain concerning Ifni; claim of Guatemala against the United Kingdom concerning British Honduras; claim of Argentina against the UK concerning the Falkland Islands.

Narrower Problems:
Enclaves and exclaves
Related Problems:
Denial of state's rights
Related UN Sustainable Development Goals:
GOAL 16: Peace and Justice Strong Institutions
Problem Type:
C: Cross-sectoral problems
Date of last update
04.10.2020 – 22:48 CEST