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The Extraterritorial Application of the Fair and Equitable Standard: The 1955 US-Iran Treaty of Amity before the International Court of Justice

Introduction In July 2018, Iran brought claims against the United States (US) before the International Court of Justice (ICJ). The former alleged breaches of certain treaty provisions of the 1955 Treaty of Amity, Economic Relations and Consular Right between the United States of America and Iran (1955 Treaty) because of the latter’s (re)imposition of sanctions in May 2018, pursuant to Washington’s withdrawal from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action. Among its claims, Iran contends that the US failed to accord Iranian nationals and Iranian companies fair and equitable treatment (FET), as mandated by Article IV(1) of the 1955 Treaty (para. 41 of the Application Instituting Proceedings). Article IV(1) of the 1955 Treaty reads: “Each […] Party shall at all times accord fair and equitable treatment to nationals and companies of the other […] Party, and to their property and enterprises; shall refrain from applying unreasonable or discriminatory measures that would impair their legally acquired rights and interests; and shall assure that their lawful contractual rights are afforded effective…

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Mistakes of Fact When Using Lethal Force in International Law: Part III

  To briefly recapitulate our examination of mistake of fact when using lethal force in various sub-fields of international law: such a doctrine is, in its purely subjective form, black letter law in international criminal law. It is also established (even if not labelled as such) in international human rights law and (somewhat less clearly) in international humanitarian…

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Mistakes of Fact When Using Lethal Force in International Law: Part II

  If a state believes that it is the target of an ongoing or imminent armed attack and uses force to repel that attack, but it later turns out that it was mistaken and that there either was no such attack or that there was no necessity to respond to it, is that use of force in putative…

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Mistakes of Fact When Using Lethal Force in International Law: Part I

  The tragic shooting down of the Ukrainian airliner over Tehran last week, which Iran has admitted to after several days of denial, has led me to think about a set of issues that was already on my mind when we were discussing the legality of the US strike on Soleimani. How exactly does international law…

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The Killing of Soleimani, the Use of Force against Iraq and Overlooked Ius Ad Bellum Questions

  As most people know by now, the US killed Qassem Soleimani, head of the Iranian Quds force, in a drone strike on 3 January. Most commentators seem to agree that Soleimani’s killing was unlawful, but one issue has received less attention: the legality of using force against Iraq. The strike occurred in Baghdad, killing not only Suleimani…

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