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The acquisition by military force of enemy territory followed by its formal annexation after the cessation of hostilities. It does not include the acquisition of land as a term of a peace treaty (see cession). The acquisition of territory after a war in the absence of any peace treaty, because the defeated state has ceased to exist, is known as debellatio or subjugation. Conquest is not now regarded as a legitimate means of acquiring territory, and hence conferring valid title, as Article 2(4) of the UN Charter expressly prohibits aggressive war and Article 5(3) of General Assembly Resolution 3314 (XXIX) of 1975 effectively nullifies any legal title acquired in this way.

Subjects: Law.

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