National position of Romania (2021)

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This page is under construction.


This is the national position of Romania on international law applicable to cyberspace. The position [1] has been submitted by Romania and included within the official UNGGE compendium of voluntary national contributions on the subject of how international law applies to the use of information and communications technologies by States.[2]. The compendium has been publicly released in August 2021.[3]

Applicability of international law

"An open, secure, stable, accessible and peaceful online environment and a responsible State behaviour in cyberspace cannot be imagined outside an international rules-based system, primarily founded on international law.

Given the specificities of cyberspace and of the incident of various information and communication technologies, the discussion on how international law applies in cyberspace is a complex one.

However, the fact that there is a need to further discuss on how exactly international law applies to cyberspace does not mean that international law does not apply to cyberspace and that we are facing a legal vacuum.

State practice will in time further crystalize the application of international law in cyberspace; as a matter of fact, not all aspects can or even should be clarified in detail in absence of relevant state practice. This is however, without prejudice to the obligation of States to act in a responsible manner including in cyberspace and assume conduct that is in line with general international law.

Romania is of the strong opinion that existing international law equally applies to cyberspace and that there is no need to develop international legal frameworks to address strictly cyberspace."


"Romania considers that respect for the state sovereignty is an international obligation per se, the breach of which constitutes an internationally wrongful act; States have an obligation to respect the sovereignty of other States and refrain from activities that constitute a violation of their sovereignty; this holds true both in what concerns the internal as well as the external facet of the principle of sovereignty.

At the same time, we acknowledge that the difficulty in relation to this principle lies in the absence in cyberspace context of the territoriality and physical dimensions, which are the specific elements of the analysis when dealing with the sovereignty in the traditional sense.

In relation to these aspects, RO is of the view that cyber operations (conducted by a State organ or by a person or entity exercising elements of governmental authority or by a person acting under the instructions of or under the direction or control of a State) that interferes with or prevents in any way a State from exercising its (internal and/ or external) sovereign prerogatives (i.e. authority over its territory, over the property and persons situated therein) constitute a violation of the principle of State sovereignty and, thus, a breach of international law.

If there is not a State or State endorsed operation one can speak of a criminal act, which should be investigated and punished in accordance with the criminal law of the State concerned."


See also

Notes and references

Bibliography and further reading