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1 The Prerogative in Foreign Affairs

From: Foreign Affairs in English Courts

F. A. Mann

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved.date: 15 August 2022

Subject(s):
Prerogative — Sovereignty — Diplomatic protection

The conduct of foreign affairs is an executive act of government in which neither the Queen nor Parliament has any part. It is the Government which represents the State and determines its policy, though Parliament has the right and the power to control the Executive, to withhold confidence in it, to refuse to grant the financial resources required to carry out its decisions, and thus to deprive the Government's foreign policy of efficacy. Hence the Government must be certain that its foreign policy has the support of Parliament. The affairs which the Crown conducts comprise the whole catalogue of relations with foreign nations which includes the declaration of war and peace, of belligerency and neutrality, and the recognition of foreign States and of their extinction. The law can control the conduct of foreign affairs if and in so far as the prerogative has been superseded by legislation, but even where this has happened there usually remains a residue of prerogative power vested in the Executive.

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