Litigating Human Rights 2: The Problem of Immunities

11 November 2015


Further readings:

In the context of regional human rights courts:

  • Bartsch, Kerstin & Bjorn Elberling. “Jus Cogens vs. State Immunity, Round Two: The Decision of the European Court of Human Rights in the Kalogero-Poulou et al. v. Greece and Germany Decision” (2003) 4 German LJ 477.
  • McGregor, Lorna. “Torture and State Immunity: Deflecting Impunity, Distorting Sovereignty” (2007) 18:5 European Journal of International Law 903.
  • Orakhelashvili, Alexander. “State immunity and hierarchy of norms: Why the House of Lords got it wrong” (2007) 18:5 European journal of international law 955.
  • Fox, Hazel. “In Defense of State Immunity: Why the UN Convention on State Immunity Is Important” (2006) 55 Int’l & Comp LQ 399.
    Moll, Leandro de Oliveira. “Al-Adsani v United Kingdom: State Immunity and Denial of Justice with Respect to Violations of Fundamental Human Rights” (2003) 4:2 Melbourne Journal of International Law 561.
    Reinisch, August & Ulf Andreas Weber. “In the Shadow of Waite and Kennedy-The Jurisdictional Immunity of International Organizations, the Individual’s Right of Access to the Courts and Administrative Tribunals as Alternative Means of Dispute Settlement” (2004) 1 Int’l Org L Rev 59.

    Bonafè, Beatrice I. “The ECHR and the Immunities Provided by International Law” (2010) 20:1 The Italian Yearbook of International Law Online 55.

    Tomonori, Mizushima. “Denying Foreign State Immunity on the Grounds of the Unavailability of Alternative Means” (2008) 71:5 The Modern Law Review 734.

    Yuille, Lua K. “A Glimmer of Hope?: State Immunity and Customary International Law in the ECHR System” (2003) State Immunity and Customary International Law in the ECHR System (December 1, 2003).

In the inter-state context:

  • Mills, Alex & Kimberley Natasha Trapp. “Smooth runs the water where the brook is deep: the obscured complexities of Germany v. Italy” (2012) 1 Cambridge Journal of International and Comparative Law (1) 153.
  • McGregor, Lorna. “State Immunity and Human Rights Is There a Future after Germany v. Italy?” (2012) Journal of international criminal justice mqs081
  • Turenne, S. “Judicial Responses to Civil Disobedience: A Comparative Approach” (2004) 10:4 Res Publica 379.
  • Keitner, Chimène I. Germany v. Italy: The International Court of Justice Affirms Principles of State Immunity (ASIL I nsight (Feb. 14, 2012), available at http://www. asil. org/insights120214. cfm, 2012).

In transnational litigation:

  • D. J. Bederman, “Dead Man’s Hand: Reshuffling Foreign Sovereign Immunities in US Human Rights Litigation” (1995) 25 Ga. J. Int’l & Comp. L. 255
  • Stephens, Beth & Michael Ratner. International human rights litigation in U.S. courts, ed (Irvington-on-Hudson, N.Y.: Transnational Publishers, 1996)
  • Potestà, Michele. “State Immunity and Jus Cogens Violations: The Alien Tort Statute Against the Backdrop of the Latest Developments in the Law of Nations” (2010) 28 Berkeley J Int’l L 571.
  • N. Roht-Arriaza, “The Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act and Human Rights Violations: One Step Forward, Two Steps Back” (1998) 16 Berkeley Journal of International Law 71
  • Ranganathan, Prasanna. “Survivors of Torture, Victims of Law: Reforming State Immunity in Canada by Developing Exceptions for Terrorism and Torture” (2008) 71 Sask L Rev 343.
  • Lininger, Tom. Overcoming Immunity Defenses to Human Rights Suits in US Courts (HeinOnline, 1994).
  • Fitzpatrick, Joan. “Future of the Alien Tort Claims Act of 1789: Lessons from In Re Marcos Human Rights Litigation, The” (1993) 67 John’s L Rev 491.
  • Ciampi, Annalisa. “The Italian Court of Cassation Asserts Civil Jurisdiction over Germany in a Criminal Case Relating to the Second World War The Civitella Case” (2009) 7:3 Journal of International Criminal Justice 597.
  • Ketchel, Aron. “Deriving Lessons for the Alien Tort Claims Act from the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act” (2007) 32 Yale J Int’l L 191.
  • Gergen, Jennifer A. “Human Rights and the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act” (1995) 36 Va J Int’l L 765.
  • Vournas, Elena. “Prefecture of Voiotia v. Federal Republic of Germany: Sovereign Immunity and the Exception for Jus Cogens Violations” (2001) 21 NYL Sch J Int’l & Comp L 629.
  • Wright, Jane. “Retribution but No Recompense: A Critique of the Torturer’s Immunity from Civil Suit” (2010) 30:1 Oxford Journal of Legal Studies 143.
  • Ogilvy, Graham. “Belhas v. Ya’Alon: The Case for a Jus Cogens Exception to the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act” (2009) 8 J Int’l Bus & L 169.
  • Bianchi, Andrea. “Ferrini v. Federal Republic of Germany” (2005) American Journal of International Law 242.
  • Kirgis, Frederic L. “Alien Torts Claims Act Proceeding against Robert Mugabe” (2000) 2 American Society of International Law Insights.
  • Martinez Jr, Lucian C. “Sovereign Impunity: Does the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act Bar Lawsuits Against Holy See in Clerical Sexual Abuse Cases” (2008) 44 Tex Int’l LJ 123.
  • Gotfredsen, Dana R. “Seeking Comfort in America: Why an Amendment to the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act Is the Most Effective Means of Holding Foreign Governments Accountable for Gender-Based Crimes” (2001) 15 Emory Int’l L Rev 647.
  • Nowosielski, Roman. “State Immunity and the Right of Access to Court. The Natoniewski Case Before the Polish Courts” (2010) 30 Polish Yearbook of International Law 263.


Immunity of international organizations

  • Wouters, Jan, Cedric Ryngaert & Pierre Schmitt. “Belgian Court of Cassation-responsibility of international organizations-immunities-domestic courts-access to justice” (2011) 105:3 The American Journal of International Law 560.
  • Henquet, Thomas. “International organisations in the Netherlands: immunity from the jurisdiction of the Dutch courts” (2010) 57:02 Netherlands International Law Review 267.

    Faith, Kimberly. “Stichting Mothers of Srebrenica v. Netherlands: Does UN Immunity Trump the Right of Access to a Court” (2013) 22 Tul J Int’l & Comp L 359.

    Ryngaert, Cedric. “The immunity of international organizations before domestic courts: recent trends” (2010) 7:1 International Organizations Law Review 121.