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Offices away from the Seat of the Mission

From: Diplomatic Law: Commentary on the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations (4th Edition)

Eileen Denza

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved.date: 31 March 2023

Diplomatic immunity — Diplomatic missions — Diplomatic relations — Diplomatic privileges — Immunity from jurisdiction — Consent to jurisdiction

This chapter examines Article 12 of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations which refers to the establishment of offices away from the seat of the diplomatic mission. Article 12 states that the members of the sending State may not establish offices forming part of the mission in the localities other than those where the mission itself is established without prior express consent. The Article traces its roots from the general practice of missions being established in the seat of government of the receiving State and to follow that government if it moved either permanently or to a summer residence. However, there are exceptions to this. One example would be in China when between 1927 and 1937; many of the missions remained in Peking although the Government had moved to Nanking. In making the Article, the members of the International Law Commission stressed the difficulty for the receiving State in ensuring privileges and immunities away from the seat of government and to prevent abuses.

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