Abstract An analysis of current weak states, covering the field of international law, security policy, international relations, conflict and development studies, history and political theory and using qualitative and quantitative research methods. The analysis focuses on the process of State Failure, which begins with weak statehood and ends in the extreme cases with the Failed State where there is no effective form of govern- ment present on the territory claimed by the state. State Failure refers to the complete or par- tial failure of state power, the loss of empirical statehood, and the multi causal deinstitution- alisation of the state. It has been shown that the criminalisation of the use of force in interna- tional relations by the UN in 1945 has dramatically changed the rules of International Rela- tions. Unfortunately in the same process one has focused less on the principle of effective governance. A consequence thereof is a rupture between de-facto- and the de-jure-aspects of statehood. A solution to the problem of weak statehood and state failure will be to give the principle of effectiveness at the recognition of states more space within the consideration.