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II. International Law in English Court—Recent Cases

  • Colin Warbrick (a1) and Dominic McGoldrick
Extract

The Orthodox position on the legal effect of treaties in English law is easy to state. Treaties are entered into by the Executive acting under prerogative powers. The exercise of these powers is not, even in the post-GCHQ2 dispensation, a matter within the jurisdiction of the courts, so that the desirability of entering into a treaty cannot be challenged in the courts.3 However, since any prerogative power must be exercised campatibly with legislation, if there is an extant statutory restriction upon making a particular treaty or providing a particular procedure as a condition upon which the prerogative power may be exercised, then compliance with the statutory provisions is a matter for the courts.4

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1 See Aust, Anthony, Modern Treaty Law and Practice (Cambridge: CUP, 2000), 150–5 and references there.

2 Council of Civil Service Unions v Minister for the Civil Service [1985] AC 374.

3 R v Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs exp Rees-Mogg [1994] QB 552.

4 Id—s 6 European Parliamentary Elections Act 1978.

5 Maclaine Watson v Department of Trade and Industry [1989] 3 All ER 523.

6 Lyons, below, n 21, para 27.

7 [2002] EHWC 2825 (QB); [2003] 1 All ER 935 (DVT).

8 DVT, paras 23–41, 5–122.

9 Para 148.

10 Para 166.

11 Paras 169–82.

12 Paras 183–199.

13 Oxford: Hart Publishing, 1997, especially chapters 1, 3 and.

14 Human Rights Act 1998, s 3(1).

15 R v Bow Street Metropolitan Stipendiary Magistrate (No 3) [1999] 2 All ER 581.

16 R (on the application of Mullen v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2002] EWCA Civ 1882; [2003] 1 All ER 613.

17 Para 29.

18 Paras 11–18.

19 Lamanna v Austria [2001] ECHR 28923/95; Weixelbraun v Austria [2001] ECHR 33730/96.

20 Para 42.

21 Rv Lyons and Others [2002] UKHL 44.

22 Rv Lambert [2001] UKHL 37.

23 Rv Kansal (No 2) [2001] UKHL 62.

24 Per Lord Bingham in Lyons, para 10.

25 Per Lord Bingham, para 19; per Lord Hoffmann, para 32.

26 Paras 39–43.

27 R (on the application of Abbasi) v Secretary of State for the Foreign & Commonwealth Office [2002] ECWA Civ 1598.

28 KhaledAl Odah v United States (DC Circuit Court of Appeals) 2003 WL938861.

29 R (on the application of Abbasi) v Secretary of State for the Foreign & Commonwealth Office [2002] ECHC 651 (Admin).

30 Abbasi, above n 27, para 60.

31 Abbasi, above n 27, paras 58–60.

32 Paras 50–52.

33 The Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament v The Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Others [2002] EWHC 2759 (QB).

34 Chandler v DPP [1964] AC 763.

35 Machiori v The Environment Agency, paras 33–5.

36 Corfu Channel (Merits) case, ICJ Rep 1949, p 4; Nicaragua (Merits) case, ICJ Rep 1986 p 14.

37 Kuwait Airways Corporation v Iraqi Airways Corporation [2002] UKHL 19.

38 Para 115. The Resolutions relied on had not been made part of English law.

39 Para 15.

40 For the brief in support of CND's case, see www.cnduk.org/briefing/opinion.htm.

41 CND, paras 11, 12.

42 Paras 23, 36, 37, 47

43 R v Home Secretary ex p Adan [2001] 1 All ER 593.

44 [1975] 1 All ER 538.

45 Above, n 27.

46 CND, para 29.

47 Para 37.

48 See above, pp 00.

49 Per Simon Brown LJ, para 45.

* This section deals with recent developments in British practice against the international and domestic context in which it takes place.

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International & Comparative Law Quarterly
  • ISSN: 0020-5893
  • EISSN: 1471-6895
  • URL: /core/journals/international-and-comparative-law-quarterly
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