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Immunity from Jurisdiction

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: 26 March 2023

Diplomatic immunity — Diplomatic missions — Diplomatic relations — Detention

This chapter examines Article 31.1 of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations which deals with a diplomatic agent’s immunity from criminal jurisdiction of the receiving State. In addition, the agent shall enjoy immunity from its civil and administrative jurisdiction, except in the case of (a) a real action relating to private immovable property; (b) an action relating to succession in which the diplomatic agent is involved as executor, administrator, heir or legatee as a private person and not on behalf of the sending State; and (c) an action relating to any professional or commercial activity outside his official functions. As inviolability was becoming recognised, it would have been unusual for criminal proceedings to take place without prior arrest and detention of the accused. Immunity from civil and administrative jurisdiction, which is less obviously coercive in character, was the next to become established of the basic rules of diplomatic law.

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