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date: 23 November 2017

Abstract and Keywords

This article examines the issues of jurisdiction and immunities in transnational human rights litigation. It discusses the bases of asserting jurisdiction and highlights the problem in achieving consensus about the rules governing foreign official immunity. It analyses several relevant court cases including claims against foreign states, against current or former foreign officials and against non-state actors. This article argues that the horizontal enforcement of human rights norms by national courts carries the potential for both salutary and disruptive effects. It explains that while it can provide an avenue for victims of human rights abuses to obtain redress for their injuries, it can also interfere with the conduct of foreign relations with states that do not recognize the validity of national proceedings.

Keywords: jurisdiction, immunities, human rights litigation, national courts, human rights abuse, foreign relations

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