Introductory Note to R (Al-Jedda) v Secretary of State for Defence
International Legal Materials, Vol. 47, p. 607, 2008
6 Pages Posted: 13 Jun 2009 Last revised: 30 Oct 2009
Date Written: June 9, 2009
In this case, a dual British and Iraqi citizen challenged his detention in Iraq by United Kingdom forces on the ground that his indefinite detention without charge or trial and without access to a court violated his rights under article 5 (liberty and security) of the European Convention on Human Rights. In considering the case, the House of Lords addressed two main international law issues: whether the detention by UK forces in Iraq was attributable to the United Nations rather than the UK, and whether the rights in the European Convention, by virtue of UN Charter article 103, are "displaced or qualified" by the legal regime established pursuant to UN Security Council resolutions.
This Note provides an overview of the case and critiques the opinions of the Law Lords, including the curiously selective quoting of Judge Lauterpacht in the Application of the Genocide Convention case.
Keywords: UN Charter, attribution, human rights, Iraq, detention, state responsibility, Behrami, Article 103, Security Council
JEL Classification: K33, K40, N40
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation