Controversies about the rule prohibiting the use of force have mainly focused on issues such as the conditions for self-defence or the existence of a right to humanitarian intervention. Beyond the question of the validity or relevance of each substantial argument, a comprehensive analysis of the doctrine reveals that the debate is actually more about methodology than substance. Hence, those who stand for an enlarged conception of the right to self-defence or who support a right of humanitarian intervention tend to adopt a particularly loose method in defining the content of the customary rule.
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