Boris Krivokapić

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Business and Law Faculty, University „Union – Nikola Tesla”, Belgrade



The paper deals with the complex problem of international incidents, which has both theoretical and practical significance. The introductory part deals with the notion of an international incident, which is defined as an unpleasant case, small conflict, etc., which endangers or spoils relations in the international community, especially between states or causes other more or less pronounced harmful consequences. Then, basic similarities and differences between international incidents, disputes, crises and conflicts were pointed out. The second part of the paper contains a classification of international incidents according to the reasons for which they occur. Here it is pointed out that incidents can occur as a consequence of decisions of governments, actions of state bodies independent of the will of the government, actions of independent individuals, accidents, natural events, but also for various other reasons, and even due to animal actions. The next part of the paper deals with the types of incidents according to their nature, where military incidents, border incidents, assassinations and diplomatic incidents are dealt with separately, because they most often break out between states and their consequences can be very severe. Finally, the last part of the paper deals with the types of incidents according to their consequences. There are analysis and examples of incidents that turned into disputes, incidents that escalated into crises and, finally, incidents that degenerated into conflicts, whether someone took advantage of certain events or even created incidents so that could use them for its own purposes, including even starting an armed conflict. The paper contains a really large number of cases from practice, some of which have been forgotten, while others concern the very recent events.