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PP v.

Andre Marti GR81561 January 18, 1991

Between 1981 and 1984, approximately 150 people disappear in Honduras.7 These
disappearances all follow a similar pattern: the victims are kidnapped by force from
public places in broad daylight by armed men in civilian clothes and disguises.8 It is
common knowledge that the kidnappings are carried out by military personnel or the
police, or persons acting under government orders.9 The victims are usually persons
whom the authorities consider to be dangerous to State security, and who have been
under surveillance for long periods of time.

Facts:
Andre Marti and his wife Shirley wanted to send packages to their friend in Switzerland
and contracted the services of Manila Packing and Export Forwarders.
When asked by the forwarder if they could examine and inspect the packages, Marti
refused, assuring that the packages simply contained books and cigars.
However, the proprietor opened the boxes for final inspection as part of their SOP. Upon
opening, they suspected that the contents were illegal drugs.
The proprietor reported the incident to NBI which confirmed that the suspected content
were marijuana.
In the presence of the NBI agents, the boxes were opened and found dried marijuana
leaves inside.
After Marti was traced by NBI, he was charged with violation of the Dangerous Drugs
Act.Marti assailed the admissibility of the drugs as evidence against him, which, according
to him, is obtained in violation of his constitutional rights against unreasonable search and
seizure and privacy of communication.

10 Military and police officials either deny these disappearances or claim that they
are incapable of preventing or investigating them, unable to punish those
responsible, or powerless to help locate the victims or their remains.11 The
investigative committees created by the State and the Armed Forces are ineffective
in producing results, and judicial proceedings regarding these disappearances are
handled inefficiently.12
I.

October 7, 1981: A petition is submitted to the Inter-American Commission of Human


Rights on behalf of Mr. Angel Manfredo Velsquez Rodrguez.13 October 4, 1983:
The Commission adopts Resolution No. 30/83, which presumes the allegations
contained in the petition to the Commission are true.14 The petition concerns the
detention and possible disappearance of Mr. Velsquez Rodrguez, and lays out the
allegations that Mr. Velsquez Rodrguez was kidnapped by government officials,
taken away to armed forces headquarters, detained, interrogated and tortured.

Issue
May an act of a private individual, allegedly in violation of appellant's constitutional rights,
be invoked against the State? 82 82
Ruling
No The Court ruled that in the absence of governmental interference, the liberties granted
by the Constitution cannot be invoked against the State. The constitutional right against
unreasonable search and seizure refers to the immunity of one's person, whether citizen or
alien, from interference by government. Its protection is directed only to governmental
action.

November 18, 1983: The State requests reconsideration of Resolution No. 30/93 on
the grounds that domestic remedies have not been exhausted, and further claims
that the National Government of Investigations has no knowledge of the whereabouts
of Mr. Velsquez Rodrguez, and that the State is making every effort to locate Mr.
Velsquez Rodrguez.16 The State further contends that Mr. Velsquez Rodrguez is
rumored to be with Salvadoran guerilla groups.17

This right do not require exclusion of evidence obtained through a search by a private
citizen.In this case, the evidence was primarily discovered and obtained by a private
person, acting in a private capacity and without the intervention of State authorities.
Therefore, there is no reason why it should not be admitted to prosecute him. Marti,
however, alleged that the NBI agents made an illegal search and seizure of the evidence.
The Court pointed out that: a) It was the proprietor who made a reasonable search of the
packages in compliance with SOP AND b) the mere presence of the NBI agents did not
convert the reasonable search effected into a warrantless search and seizure. Merely to
observe and look at that which is in plain sight is not a search. Marti further argued that
since the Constitution expressly declares as inadmissible any evidence obtained in violation
of the constitutional prohibition against illegal search and seizure, it matters not whether the
evidence was procured by police authorities or private individuals. The Court answered that
the Constitution, in laying down the principles of the government and fundamental liberties
of the people, does not govern relationships between individuals.

PROCEDURAL HISTORY A. Before the Commission

May 30, 1984: The Commission informs the State that it has decided in light of the
information submitted by the Honorable Government to reconsider Resolution No.
30/83 and to continue its study of the case.18
April 18, 1986: The Commission adopts Resolution No. 22/86, finding that the new
information presented by the Government is insufficient to warrant reconsideration of
Resolution No. 30/83. To the contrary, the Commission finds that all evidence points
to the State being responsible for the disappearance of Mr. Velsquez Rodrguez,
who is still missing.19 The Commission confirms Resolution No. 30/83 and refers the
matter to the Court.20
C.

Before the Court

April 24, 1986: The Commission submits the case to the Court after the State failed to
adopt its recommendations.21

Velasquez Rodriguez v. Honduras Inter-American Court of Human Rights, July 29,


1988 Series C, No. (1988)

1.

ABSTRACT1

Article 4 (Right to Life)


Article 5 (Right to Humane Treatment)
Article 7 (Right to Personal Liberty)

This is the first case decided by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.
The Velsquez Rodrguez case, together with the Godnez Cruz, and Fairn Garbi and
Sols Corrales cases, all considered by the Court around the same time, form a trio of
landmark cases targeting forced disappearance practices by the Honduran government
during the early 1980s.
I. FACTS
A.

Chronology of Events September 12, 1981: Mr. Angel Manfredo Velsquez


Rodrguez, a student at the National Autonomous University of Honduras
(Universidad Nacional Autnoma de Honduras, UNAH), is involved in activities that
the State considers dangerous to national security.2 Between 4:30 and 5:00 pm,
several heavily armed men in civilian clothes, driving a white Ford vehicle without
license plates, kidnap Mr. Velsquez Rodrguez from a parking lot in downtown
Tegucigalpa.3 Mr. Velsquez Rodrguez is taken to an armed forces station located
in Barrio El Manchn of Tegucigalpa, where he is detained by members of the
National Office of Investigations (DNI) and the Honduran Armed Forces, who
accuse him of political crimes, and subject him to harsh interrogation and torture.4
September 17, 1981: Mr. Velsquez Rodrguez is moved to the First Infantry
Battalion, an armed forces command area, near Tegucigalpa. The police and
security forces deny that he was ever detained there.6

B.

Other Relevant Facts

Violations Alleged by Commission22

Same Violations Alleged by Commission.


Amnesty International, Association of the Bar of the City of New York, Lawyers Committee
for Human Rights, and Minnesota Lawyers International Human Rights Committee submit
amicus curiae briefs to the Court.
24 July 23, 1986: Judge Jorge R. Hernndez Alcerro recuses himself from hearing the
case.
25 August 21, 1986: The State names Judge Rigoberto Espinal Iras as judge ad hoc.
26 October 31, 1986: The State raises objections that the Commission did not follow proper
admissibility procedures; that the Commission did not take into account information
provided by the State regarding the failure to exhaust domestic legal remedies; and further
that these domestic legal remedies were not pursued or exhausted.27 The State also
objects on grounds that the Commission did not follow proper procedure for preparing
reports, ignored the Conventions provision on friendly settlements, failed to comply with
case referral procedures, and that submitting the States observations on the merits is
inappropriate at this time
28 June 15, 1987: The State raises its preliminary objections at a hearing.29 The State
asserts six preliminary objections: lack of a formal declaration of admissibility by the
Commission, failure to attempt a friendly settlement, failure to carry out an on-site
investigation, lack of a prior hearing, and improper application of Articles 50, which provides

that the Commission may draw up a report if a settlement is not reached, and 51, which
provides that if the State has not responded to the Commissions report within three
months, the Commission may by majority vote set forth its opinions regarding the question
submitted.
30 June 26, 1987: The Court delivers its judgment on the States preliminary objections.31
The Court unanimously rejects all of the States preliminary objections except one, the lack
of exhaustion of domestic legal remedies, 32 which the Court orders to be joined to the
merits of the case because lack of effective domestic remedy often occurs in forced
disappearances. 33 With respect to the objection of the lack of a formal declaration of
admissibility by the Commission, the Court finds that there is nothing in the American
Conventions procedures requiring an express declaration of admissibility when the
Commission itself is involved.34 Therefore, the Commissions failure to make an express
declaration on the question of admissibility is not a valid basis for barring proper
consideration by the Court.35 Regarding the States argument that the Commission did not
promote a friendly settlement, the Court reasons that based on the text of the American
Convention, attempting such a friendly settlement need only happen when the
circumstances of the controversy make the option suitable or necessary, and that the
decision is at the Commissions sole discretion.36 The Court further finds that the
Commissions failure to conduct an on-site investigation to be inconsequential on the
grounds that the rules governing on-site investigations are subject to the discretionary
powers of the Commission.37 With respect to the States objection to the Commissions
failure to hold a preliminary hearing, the Court holds that a preliminary hearing is a
procedural requirement only when the Commission considers it necessary or when the
parties express such a request.38 Since neither the petitioners nor the State asked for a
hearing, the Commission did not consider it necessary, and was not required to hold one.39
As for the States objection to the improper application of Articles 50 and 51 of the
Convention, the Court finds that, despite that the requirements were not fully complied with,
there has been no impairment of the States rights such that the Court should rule the case
inadmissible.40

Article 7 (Right to Personal Liberty), in relation to Article 1(1) of the Convention, to the
detriment of Mr. Velsquez Rodrguez, 59 because:
The kidnapping of a person is an arbitrary deprivation of liberty, and an
infringement of the right to be brought without delay before a judge or to invoke appropriate
procedures to review the legality of an arrest.60 Based on the evidence presented in the
case, the Court found that Mr. Velsquez Rodrguez was a victim of arbitrary detention,
which deprived him of his physical liberty without cause.61 For that reason, the Court found
that the State violated Article 7 (Right to Personal Liberty). 62 Although the Commission did
not allege a violation of Article 1(1) (Obligation to Respect Rights) of the American
Convention, the Court specifically applies this violation because Article 1(1) contains the
generic basis of the protection of all the rights recognized by the Convention.63
The Court discussed the essential nature of Article 1(1) in determining whether
a violation of human rights can be imputed to a State by charging States with the duty to
respect and guarantee rights that are recognized in the American Convention.64 The Court
also rejected the States final preliminary objection of non-exhaustion of domestic
remedies,65 because:
The requirement of exhaustion of domestic remedies exists to allow the State
to resolve the problem under its internal law before being confronted with an international
proceeding.66 The Court agreed with the State that this requirement is necessary because
domestic law precedes the international system in the protection of human rights,67
however, the Court also reasoned that the international protection of human rights is
founded on the very need to protect victims from arbitrary exercises of governmental
authority.68 For that reason, when a petitioner alleges a lack of adequate domestic remedy,
international protection is not only justified, but necessary and urgent.69 The Court noted
that not all remedies are applicable in every circumstance, and not all remedies are
effective.70

March 20, 1987: In response to the States objections, the Commission draws the
conclusion that the State violated Articles 4 (Right to Life), 5 (Right to Humane Treatment),
and 7 (Right to Personal Liberty) of the American Convention because it detained Mr.
Velsquez Rodrguez on September 12, 1981 and he has been missing ever since.41 The
Commission further asserts that the substantive or procedural objections raised by the
State have no legal basis, and requests that the Court find that the State violated the
aforementioned rights of Mr. Velsquez Rodriguez.42

The Commission was able to show that although writs of habeas corpus and
criminal complaints were filed, they were ineffective.71 While there may have been legal
remedies in the State that would have theoretically allowed a detained person to be found,
the States attempts to solve the cases of disappearance were ineffective because the
imprisonments were clandestine, and suspicious procedures were used to bring those
responsible to justice.72

November 6, 1987 - December 18, 1987: The Commission asks the Court to take
provisional measures in view of threats against several witnesses who have testified or who
have been asked to testify before the Court.43

NICARAGUA VS UNITED STATES (SUMMARY) ON SELF DEFENCE AND USE


OF FORCE

January 15, 1988: After being informed that witnesses were assassinated on January 5,
1988 and on January 14, 1988, the Court adopts provisional measures requesting that the
Government of Honduras adopt all measures necessary to prevent further infringements on
the basic rights of those who have appeared or have been summoned to appear before the
Court in all pending forced disappearance cases (Velsquez Rodrguez, Fairn Garbi and
Sols Corrales and Godnez Cruz cases).44 The Court further requests that the State do
everything person to have his life respected.49 The practice of disappearances in Honduras
often involved secret executions and concealment of bodies, the practice is a flagrant
violation of the right enshrined in Article 4.50 Since Mr. Velsquez Rodrguez has been
disappeared for seven years, and because his body was never discovered, the Court found
there was a reasonable presumption that he had been killed.51
The Court stated that even if there is the slightest doubt as to this whether Mr. Velsquez
Rodriguez is dead, it is presumed that his fate was impacted by authorities who
systematically executed detainees without trial and who concealed bodies to avoid
punishment.52
Taking the above evidence along with the States failure to investigate or to take steps to
prevent such forced disappearances from happening, the Court found that the State
violated Article 4 (Right to Life). 53 Article 5 (Right to Humane Treatment), in relation to
Article 1(1) of the Convention, to the detriment of Mr. Velsquez Rodrguez, 54 because:
Article 5 (Right to Humane Treatment) of the Convention recognizes the right
that every individual has to have their physical, mental, and moral integrity respected.55
Article 5 also recognizes the right to be free from cruel, inhuman, or degrading torture,
punishment, and treatment.56
Investigations into the practice of forced disappearance in addition to the
testimony of found victims suggest that victims of this practice are usually subject to cruel,
inhumane, and degrading treatment during their detainment.57 Though there is no direct
evidence showing that Mr. Velsquez Rodrguez was tortured, the Court concluded that Mr.
Velsquez Rodrguez was kidnapped and imprisoned by government officials, and,
because the State has been shown to subject detainees to torture in the past, the Court
held that the State violated Article 5 (Right to Humane Treatment) in this case of forced
disappearance.58

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Gunaratne
and
Public
International
Law
at https://ruwanthikagunaratne.wordpress.com, 2008 present. Unauthorized use and/or
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and specific direction to the original content.

Case: Case Concerning the Military and Paramilitary Activities In and Against
Nicaragua (Nicaragua vs United States) (Merits: focusing on matters relating to the use
of force and self-defence)
Year of Decision: 1986
Court: ICJ
NB: This blog post will discuss matters on the use of force and self-defence. If you would
like to read about the impact of the Nicaragua judgement on customary international
law and the US multilateral reservation please click here.
Overview: The case involved military and paramilitary activities conducted by the United
States against Nicaragua from 1981 to 1984. Nicaragua asked the Court to find that these
activities violated international law.
Facts of the Case:
In July 1979 the Government of President Somoza collapsed following an armed opposition
led by the Frente Sandinista de Liberacibn Nacional (FSLN) . The new government
installed by FSLN began to meet armed opposition from supporters of the former Somoza
Government and ex-members of the National Guard. The US initially supportive of the

new government changed its attitude when, according to the United States, it found that
Nicaragua was providing logistical support and weapons to guerrillas in El Salvador. In
April 1981 it terminated United States aid to Nicaragua and in September 1981, according
to Nicaragua, the United States decided to plan and undertake activities directed against
Nicaragua.
The armed opposition to the new Government was conducted mainly by
(1) Fuerza Democratica Nicaragense (FDN), which operated along the border with
Honduras, and (2) Alianza Revolucionaria Democratica (ARDE), which operated along the
border with Costa Rica, (see map of the region). Initial US support to these groups fighting
against the Nicaraguan Government (called contras) was covert. Later, the United
States officially acknowledged its support (for example: In 1983 budgetary legislation
enacted by the United States Congress made specific provision for funds to be used by
United States intelligence agencies for supporting directly or indirectly military or
paramilitary operations in Nicaragua).
Nicaragua also alleged that the United States is effectively in control of the contras, the
United States devised their strategy and directed their tactics and that they were paid for
and directly controlled by United States personal. Nicaragua also alleged that some attacks
were carried out by United States military with the aim to overthrow the Government of
Nicaragua. Attacks against Nicaragua included the mining of Nicaraguan ports and attacks
on ports, oil installations and a naval base. Nicaragua alleged that aircrafts belonging to the
United States flew over Nicaraguan territory to gather intelligence, supply to the contras in
the field and to intimidate the population.
The United States did not appear before the ICJ at the merit stages, after refusing to accept
the ICJs jurisdiction to decide the case. The United States at the jurisdictional phase of the
hearing, however, stated that it relied on an inherent right of collective self-defence
guaranteed in A. 51 of the UN Charter by providing, upon request, proportionate and
appropriate assistance to Costa Rica, Honduras and El Salvador in response to
Nicaraguas alleged acts aggression against those countries (paras. 126, 128).

The Court held that:

The prohibition on the use of force is found in Article 2(4) of the UN


Charter and in customary international law.

In a controversial finding the court sub-classified the use of force as: (1) the
most grave forms of the use of force (i.e. those that constitute an armed
attack) and (2) the less grave form (i.e. organizing, instigating, assisting or
participating in acts of civil strife and terrorist acts in another State when the
acts referred to involve a threat or use of force not amounting to an armed
attack).

The United States violated the customary international law prohibition on the
use of force when it laid mines in Nicaraguan ports. It violated this prohibition
when it attacked Nicaraguan ports, oil installations and a naval base (see
below). The United States could justify its action on collective self-defence, if
certain criteria were met this aspect is discussed below.

The United States violated the customary international law prohibition on the
use of force when it assisted the contras by organizing or encouraging the
organization of irregular forces and armed bands for incursion into the
territory of another state and participated in acts of civil strifein another
State when these acts involved the threat or use of force.

The supply of funds to the contras did not violate the prohibition on the use of
force. Nicaragua argued that the timing of the offensives against it was
determined by the United States: i.e. an offensive could not be launched until
the requisite funds were available. The Court held that it does not follow that
each provision of funds by the United States was made to set in motion a
particular offensive, and that that offensive was planned by the United States.
The Court held further that while the arming and training of the contras
involved the threat or use of force against Nicaragua, the supply of funds, in it
self, only amounted to an act of intervention in the internal affairs of
Nicaragua (para 227) this aspect is discussed below.

Questions before the Court:

Did the United States breach its customary international law obligation not to
intervene in the affairs of another State when it trained, armed, equipped and
financed the contra forces or encouraged, supported and aided the military and
paramilitary activities against Nicaragua?

Did the United States breach its customary international law obligation not to
use force against another State when it directly attacked Nicaragua in 1983
1984 and when its activities in bullet point 1 above resulted in the use of force?

If so, can the military and paramilitary activities that the United
States undertook in and against Nicaragua be justified as collective selfdefence?

What is an armed attack?

A controversial but interesting aspect of the Courts judgement was its


definition of an armed attack. The Court held that an armed attack included:

(1) action by regular armed forces across an international border; and

Did the United States breach its customary international law obligation not to
violate the sovereignty of another State when it directed or authorized its
aircrafts to fly over Nicaraguan territory and by acts referred to in bullet point 2
above?
Did the United States breach its customary international law obligations not
to violate the sovereignty of another State, not to intervene in its affairs, not to
use force against another State and not to interrupt peaceful maritime
commerce when it laid mines in the internal waters and the territorial sea of
Nicaragua?

(2) the sending by or on behalf of a State of armed bands, groups, irregulars or


mercenaries, which carry out acts of armed force against another State of such gravity as
to amount to (inter alia) an actual armed attack conducted by regular forces, or its (the
States) substantial involvement therein
NB: The second point somewhat resembles Article 3 (g) of the UNGA Resolution 3314
(XXIX) on the Definition of Aggression.

Mere frontier incidents are not considered as an armed attack unless


because of its scale and effects it would have been classified as an armed
attack if it was carried out by regular forces.

Assistance to rebels in the form of provision of weapons or logistical support


did not constitute an armed attack it can be regarded as a threat or use of
force, or an intervention in the internal or external affairs of other States (see
paras 195, 230).

Under Article 51 of the UN Charter and under CIL self-defence is only


available against a use of force that amounts to an armed attack (para 211).

ICJ decision: The United States violated customary international law in relation to bullet
points 1, 2, 4 and 5 above. On bullet point 3, the Court found that the United States could
not rely on collective self-defence to justify its use of force against Nicaragua.
Relevant Findings of the Court:
1. The court held that the United States breached its customary international law
obligation not to use force against another State: (1) when it directly attacked
Nicaragua in 1983 1984; and (2) when its activities with the contra forces resulted in
the threat or use of force (see paras 187 -201).

NB: In in the Case Concerning Oil Platforms and the advisory opinion on the Legal
Consequences of of the Construction of a Wall in the Occupied Palestinian Territory
(hereinafter called the Palestine wall case) the ICJ upheld the definition of armed attack
proposed in the Nicaragua case. In the Palestinian wall case, the attacks from which Israel
was claiming self defence originated from non-State actors. However, the Court held that

Article 51s inherent right of self defence was available to one State only against another
State (para 139). Judges Higgins, Buergenthal and Kooijmans opposed this narrow view.
Articles on State Responsibility, prepared by the International Law Commission, provided
significant guidance as to when acts of non-State actors may be attributed to States. These
articles, together with recent State practice relating attacks on terrorists operating from
other countries (see legal opinions surrounding the United States attack on Afghanistan),
may have widened the scope of an armed attack, and consequently, the right of self
defence, envisaged by the ICJ.

The Court looked extensively into the conduct of Nicaragua, El Salvador, Costa
Rica and Honduras in determining whether an armed attack was undertaken by
Nicaragua against the three countries which in turn would necessitate selfdefence (paras 230 236). The Court referred to statements made by El
Salvador, Costa Rica, Honduras and the United States before the Security
Council. None of the countries who were allegedly subject to an armed attack
by Nicaragua (1) declared themselves as a victim of an armed attack or
request assistance from the United States in self-defence at the time when
the United States was allegedly acting in collective self-defence; and (2) the
United States did not claim that it was acting under Article 51 of the UN Charter
and it did not report that it was so acting to the Security Council. The Court
concluded that the United States cannot justify its use of force as collective
self-defence.

The criteria with regard to necessity and proportionality, that is necessary


when using force in self-defence was also not fulfilled (para 237).

2. The Court held that the United States could not justify its military and paramilitary
activities on the basis of collective self-defence.

Customary international law allows for exceptions to the prohibition on the use
of force including the right to individual or collective self-defence (for a
difference between the two forms of self defence, click here). The United
States, at an earlier stage of the proceedings, had asserted that the Charter
itself acknowledges the existence of this customary international law right when
it talks of the inherent right of a State under Article 51 of the Charter
(para.193).
When a State claims that it used force in collective self-defence, the Court
would look into two aspects:

3. The Court held that the United States breached its CIL obligation not to
intervene in the affairs of another State when it trained, armed, equipped and
financed the contra forces or encouraged, supported and aided the military and
paramilitary activities against Nicaragua.

(1) whether the circumstances required for the exercise of self-defence existed and
(2) whether the steps taken by the State, which was acting in self-defence, corresponds to
the requirements of international law (i.e. did it comply with the principles of necessity and
proportionality).

Several criteria must be met for a State to exercise the right of individual or
collective self-defence:

(1) A State must have been the victim of an armed attack;


(2) This State must declare itself as a victim of an armed attack; [NB: the assessment
whether an armed attack took place nor not is done by the state who was subjected to the
attack. A third State cannot exercise a right of collective self-defence based its (the third
States) own assessment]; and
(3) In the case of collective self-defence the victim State must request for assistance
(there is no rule permitting the exercise of collective self-defence in the absence of a
request by the State which regards itself as the victim of an armed attack).
(4) The State does not, under customary international law, have the same obligation as
under Article 51 of the UN Charter to report to the Security Council that an armed attack
happened but the absence of a report may be one of the factors indicating whether the
State in question was itself convinced that it was acting in self-defence (see below).
At this point, the Court may consider whether in customary international law there is any
requirement corresponding to that found in the treaty law of the United Nations Charter, by
which the State claiming to use the right of individual or collective self-defence must report
to an international body, empowered to determine the conformity with international law of
the measures which the State is seeking to justify on that basis. Thus Article 51 of the
United Nations Charter requires that measures taken by States in exercise of this right of
self-defence must be immediately reported to the Security Council. As the Court has
observed above (paragraphs 178 and 188), a principle enshrined in a treaty, if reflected in
customary international law, may well be so unencumbered with the conditions and
modalities surrounding it in the treaty. Whatever influence the Charter may have had on
customary international law in these matters, it is clear that in customary international law it
is not a condition of the lawfulness of the use of force in self-defence that a procedure so
closely dependent on the content of a treaty commitment and of the institutions established
by it, should have been followed. On the other hand, if self-defence is advanced as a
justification for measures which would otherwise be in breach both of the principle of
customary international law and of that contained in the Charter, it is to be expected that the
conditions of the Charter should be respected. Thus for the purpose of enquiry into the
customary law position, the absence of a report may be one of the factors indicating
whether the State in question was itself convinced that it was acting in self-defence (See
paras 200, 232 -236).

The principle of non- intervention means that every State has a right to conduct
its affairs without outside interference i.e it forbids States or groups of
States to intervene directly or indirectly in internal or external affairs of other
States. . This is a corollary of the principle of sovereign equality of States.

A prohibited intervention must accordingly be one bearing on matters in which each State is
permitted, by the principle of State sovereignty to decide freely. One of these is the choice
of a political, economic, social and cultural system, and the formulation of foreign policy.
Intervention is wrongful when it uses methods of coercion in regard to such choices, which
must remain free ones. The element of coercion, which defines, and indeed forms the very
essence of, prohibited intervention, is particularly obvious in the case of an intervention
which uses force, either in the direct form of military action, or in the indirect form of support
for subversive or terrorist armed activities within another State (para 205).

Nicaragua stated that the activities of the United States were aimed to
overthrow the government of Nicaragua and to substantially damage the
economy and weaken the political system to coerce the Government of
Nicaragua to accept various political demands of the United States. The Court
held:

first, that the United States intended, by its support of the contras, to coerce the
Government of Nicaragua in respect of matters in which each State is permitted, by the
principle of State sovereignty, to decide freely (see paragraph 205 above) ; and secondly
that the intention of the contras themselves was to overthrow the present Government of
Nicaragua The Court considers that in international law, if one State, with a view to the
coercion of another State, supports and assists armed bands in that State whose purpose
is to overthrow the government of that State, that amounts to an intervention by the one
State in the internal affairs of the other, whether or not the political objective of the State
giving such support and assistance is equally far reaching.

The financial support, training, supply of weapons, intelligence and logistic


support given by the United States to the contras was a breach of the principle
of non-interference. no such general right of intervention, in support of an
opposition within another State, exists in contemporary international law, even
if such a request for assistance is made by an opposition group of that State
(see para 246 for more).

However, in a controversial finding, the Court held that the United States did
not devise the strategy, direct the tactics of the contras or exercise control on
them in manner so as to make their acts committed in violation of international
law imputable to the United States (see in this respect Determining US
responsibility for contra operations under international law 81 AMJIL 86).T he
Court concluded that a number of military and paramilitary operations of the
contras were decided and planned, if not actually by United States advisers,
then at least in close collaboration with them, and on the basis of the
intelligence and logistic support which the United States was able to offer,
particularly the supply aircraft provided to the contras by the United States
but not all contra operations reflected strategy and tactics wholly devised by
the United States.

In sum, the evidence available to the Court indicates that the various forms of assistance
provided to the contras by the United States have been crucial to the pursuit of their
activities, but is insufficient to demonstrate their complete dependence on United States
aid. On the other hand, it indicates that in the initial years of United States assistance the
contra force was so dependent. However, whether the United States Government at any
stage devised the strategy and directed the tactics of the contras depends on the extent to
which the United States made use of the potential for control inherent in that dependence.
The Court already indicated that it has insufficient evidence to reach a finding on this point.
It is a fortiori unable to determine that the contra force may be equated for legal purposes
with the forces of the United StatesThe Court has taken the view (paragraph 110 above)
that United States participation, even if preponderant or decisive, in the financing,
organizing, training, supplying and equipping of the contras, the selection of its military or
paramilitary targets, and the planning of the whole of its operation, is still insufficient in
itself, on the basis of the evidence in the possession of the Court, for the purpose of
attributing to the United States the acts committed by the contras in the course of their
military or paramilitary operations in Nicaragua. All the forms of United States participation
mentioned above, and even the general control by the respondent State over a force with a
high degree of dependency on it, would not in themselves mean, without further evidence,
that the United States directed or enforced the perpetration of the acts contrary to human
rights and humanitarian law alleged by the applicant State. Such acts could well be
committed by members of the contras without the control of the United States. For this
conduct to give rise to legal responsibility of the United States, it would in principle have to
be proved that that State had effective control of the military or paramilitary.

Interesting, however, the Court also held that providing humanitarian aid to
persons or forces in another country, whatever their political affiliations or
objectives, cannot be regarded as unlawful intervention, or as in any other way
contrary to international law (para 242).
In the event one State intervenes in the affairs of another State, the victim
State has a right to intervene in a manner that is short of an armed attack
(210).

While an armed attack would give rise to an entitlement to collective self-defence, a use of
force of a lesser degree of gravity cannot as the Court has already observed (paragraph 21
1 above). produce any entitlement to take collective countermeasures involving the use of
force. The acts of which Nicaragua is accused, even assuming them to have been
established and imputable to that State, could only have justified proportionate countermeasures on the part of the State which had been the victim of these acts, namely El
Salvador, Honduras or Costa Rica. They could not justify counter-measures taken by a third
State, the United States, and particularly could not justify intervention involving the use of
force.
4. The United States breached its customary international law obligation not to
violate the sovereignty of another State when it directed or authorized its aircrafts
to fly over Nicaraguan territory and when it laid mines in the internal waters of
Nicaragua and its territorial sea.

The ICJ examined evidence and found that in early 1984 mines were laid in or
close to ports of the territorial sea or internal waters of Nicaragua by persons
in the pay or acting ion the instructions of the United States and acting under
its supervision with its logistical support. The United States did not issue any
warning on the location or existence of mines and this resulted in injuries and
increases in maritime insurance rates.
The court found that the United States also carried out high-altitude
reconnaissance flights over Nicaraguan territory and certain low-altitude
flights, complained of as causing sonic booms.
The basic concept of State sovereignty in customary international law is found
in Article 2(1) of the UN Charter. State sovereignty extends to a States internal
waters, its territorial sea and the air space above its territory. The United States
violated customary international law when it laid mines in the territorial sea and
internal waters of Nicaragua and when it carried out unauthorised overflights
over Nicaraguan airspace by aircrafts that belong to or was under the control of
the United States.

Material on the Nicaragua case

The following contains a list of scholarly articles and other material that discuss the
Nicaragua case. If you would like to add to the list, please note your suggestions in the
comment box.
The judgment including separate opinions of individual judges and summaries of the
judgment and orders
The World Court and Jus Cogens, 81 AMJIL 93, Gorden A. Christenson. Christenson
argues that an independent development of the customary law right divorced from the
treaty can have wider consequences:
We have then a double irony. The Court uses the United States position accepting the
treaty norm against the threat or use of force also as a customary norm possibly having jus
cogens quality, in part, to justify taking jurisdiction as a matter quite independent of the
norm that otherwise falls under the multilateral treaty reservation. Since there are two
separate sources of the law, the choice of the one source rather than the other means that
the norm relied upon survives the jurisdictional bar to the use of the other. Yet the two
norms are not different enough to undermine completely the content of the Charter norm.
This formalism simply masks the more interesting question of the Courts institutional claim,
given the ineffectiveness of the UN Security system, to develop an international public order
case by case, by breaking away form the strictures of the Charter and treaty norms. The
Court untied the treaty norms from their constraints within the United Nations or regional
collective security systems, a potentially destabilizing decision, one whose consequences
are unforeseen. The decision based on the validity of an autonomous norm of customary
international law free from the Charter is a constitutive one of potential great significance
(81 AMJIL 100, 1987).
Trashing customary international law, Antony DAmato, 81 AMJIL 102 (1987) (full text):
(DAmato discusses the paucity of State practice examined by the international court of
justice before concluding that the principle non-intervention formed part of customary
international law. He argues that the acceptance of General Assembly resolutions do not
manifest opinio juris. He states that the Court failed to consider that Article 2(4) continued to
evolve through the years.)
The World Courts Achievement, Richard Falk, 81 AMJIL 106 (Falk takes a generally
positive approach to the judgment, gives a good overview of the case and Judge Shwebels
dissent)
Drawing the right line, Tom J. Farer, 81 AMJIL 112 (Farer takes a cold-war contextual
approach to the judgment and supports the Courts narrow view of an armed attack and self
defence).
Some observations on the ICJs procedural and substantive innovations, Thomas M.
Franck, 81 AMJIL 116 (criticizes the determination of relevant State practice in relation to
non-intervention and the reliance on UN resolutions to illicit opinio juris (it alleges that the
Court sought to harden soft law prematurely). Frank points out that the interventions falling
short of armed attacks would not allow States to target rebel groups in another States
territory even if the insurgency is planned, trained, armed and directed from that territory).
Protecting the Courts institutional interests: Why not the Marbury approach? Michael J.
Glennon, 81 AMJIL 121 (discusses reservations before the ICJ and the Courts prerogative
to determine its own jurisdiction)
Discretion to decline to exercise jurisdiction, Edward Gorden, 81 AMJIL 129 (discusses the
discretionary power of the court to decline to exercise its jurisdiction at the merit stages).
The Nicaragua judgment and the future of the law of force and self-defense, John Lawrence
Hargrove 81AMJIL 135 (Hargrove criticizes the ICJs construction of the notion of collective
self defense, armed attack and forcible countermeasures).
Somber reflections on the compulsory jurisdiction of the international court, Mark Weston
Janis, 81 AMJIL 144
Custom on a sliding scale, Frederic L. Kirgis 81 AMJIL 146 (Kirgis discusses the
relationship between State practice and opinio juris, criticizes the methods (or lack thereof)
of the Court in determining the customary law nature of Article 2(4) of the Charter. Points
out that actual State practice on intervention did not support the Courts findings).
The International Court lives unto its name, Herbert W. Briggs, 81 AMJIL 78.

Determining US responsibility for contra operations under international law, Francis V.


Boyle

Plaintiffs (petitioners) thus filed the instant special civil action for certiorari and asked the
court to rescind and set aside the dismissal order on the ground that the respondent RTC
Judge gravely abused his discretion in dismissing the action.

Le peuple, cest moi!The world court and human rights, 81 AMJIL 173

ISSUES:

LJIL Symposium: Discussion of the ICJ Nicaragua Judgment

(1) Whether or not the plaintiffs have a cause of action.

The Impact of the Nicaragua Case on the Court and Its Role: Harmful, Helpful, or In
Between?, Lori Fisler Damrosch (Abstract: At the time the United States withdrew from
participation in the Nicaragua case at the International Court of Justice, the US government
expressed concern that the course on which the Court may now be embarked could do
enormous harm to it as an institution and to the cause of international law. This essay
examines whether or to what extent the anticipated negative effects came to pass. It
concludes that dire predictions of harm to the Court were overstated. Twenty-five years
later, the rate at which states accept the Courts jurisdiction has held steady. Only a few
states have added jurisdictional reservations concerning military activities. The mix of cases
being brought to the Court has shifted towards a more representative distribution. States
are generally complying with the Courts decisions, though some compliance problems
remain. The most serious negative impact has been on the willingness of the United States
(still the Courts most active litigant) to participate fully in international dispute settlement.)
LJIL Symposium: The Nicaragua Case: Its Impact, John Dugard
LJIL Symposium: Response of Lori F. Damrosch to Comments by John Dugard, Lori F.
Damrosch
The Principle of Non-Intervention 25 Years after the Nicaragua Judgment, by Marcelo
Kohen(Abstract: This article focuses on the analysis by the International Court of Justice of
the principle of non-intervention in domestic affairs in its judgment of 27 June 1986 in the
case concerning Military and Paramilitary Activities in and against Nicaragua and contrasts
it with the evolution of international law and practice in this field. It is proposed that the
Courts 1986 analysis not only remains of actuality today, but also constitutes a precursor to
legal developments that have since taken place. This is particularly the case with regard to
the relationship between the protection of human rights on the one hand and the safeguard
of state sovereignty and the collective security regime on the other. The 1986 judgment
helped to clarify the content of humanitarian assistance. It constituted the starting point for
the development of this concept in a series of GA resolutions that were subsequently
adopted. The controversial doctrine of humanitarian intervention, as well as state practice
in violation of this principle, in no way led to modifying existing international law. Similarly,
the new concept of responsibility to protect, which places emphasis on collective security
and discounts unilateral action, has not led to the disappearance of the principle of nonintervention either.)
Oposa vs. Factoran Case Digest (G.R. No. 101083, July 30, 1993)

(2) Whether or not the complaint raises a political issue.


(3) Whether or not the original prayer of the plaintiffs result in the impairment of contracts.
RULING:
First Issue: Cause of Action.
Respondents aver that the petitioners failed to allege in their complaint a specific legal right
violated by the respondent Secretary for which any relief is provided by law. The Court did
not agree with this. The complaint focuses on one fundamental legal right -- the right to a
balanced and healthful ecology which is incorporated in Section 16 Article II of the
Constitution. The said right carries with it the duty to refrain from impairing the environment
and implies, among many other things, the judicious management and conservation of the
country's forests. Section 4 of E.O. 192 expressly mandates the DENR to be the primary
government agency responsible for the governing and supervising the exploration,
utilization, development and conservation of the country's natural resources. The policy
declaration of E.O. 192 is also substantially re-stated in Title XIV Book IV of the
Administrative Code of 1987. Both E.O. 192 and Administrative Code of 1987 have set the
objectives which will serve as the bases for policy formation, and have defined the powers
and functions of the DENR. Thus, right of the petitioners (and all those they represent) to a
balanced and healthful ecology is as clear as DENR's duty to protect and advance the said
right.
A denial or violation of that right by the other who has the correlative duty or obligation to
respect or protect or respect the same gives rise to a cause of action. Petitioners maintain
that the granting of the TLA, which they claim was done with grave abuse of discretion,
violated their right to a balance and healthful ecology. Hence, the full protection thereof
requires that no further TLAs should be renewed or granted.
After careful examination of the petitioners' complaint, the Court finds it to be adequate
enough to show, prima facie, the claimed violation of their rights.
Second Issue: Political Issue.
Second paragraph, Section 1 of Article VIII of the constitution provides for the expanded
jurisdiction vested upon the Supreme Court. It allows the Court to rule upon even on the
wisdom of the decision of the Executive and Legislature and to declare their acts as invalid
for lack or excess of jurisdiction because it is tainted with grave abuse of discretion.
Third Issue: Violation of the non-impairment clause.

FACTS:
The plaintiffs in this case are all minors duly represented and joined by their parents. The
first complaint was filed as a taxpayer's class suit at the Branch 66 (Makati, Metro Manila),
of the Regional Trial Court, National capital Judicial Region against defendant (respondent)
Secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Reasources (DENR). Plaintiffs
alleged that they are entitled to the full benefit, use and enjoyment of the natural resource
treasure that is the country's virgin tropical forests. They further asseverate that they
represent their generation as well as generations yet unborn and asserted that continued
deforestation have caused a distortion and disturbance of the ecological balance and have
resulted in a host of environmental tragedies.
Plaintiffs prayed that judgement be rendered ordering the respondent, his agents,
representatives and other persons acting in his behalf to cancel all existing Timber License
Agreement (TLA) in the country and to cease and desist from receiving, accepting,
processing, renewing or approving new TLAs.

The Court held that the Timber License Agreement is an instrument by which the state
regulates the utilization and disposition of forest resources to the end that public welfare is
promoted. It is not a contract within the purview of the due process clause thus, the nonimpairment clause cannot be invoked. It can be validly withdraw whenever dictated by
public interest or public welfare as in this case. The granting of license does not create
irrevocable rights, neither is it property or property rights.
Moreover, the constitutional guaranty of non-impairment of obligations of contract is limit by
the exercise by the police power of the State, in the interest of public health, safety, moral
and general welfare. In short, the non-impairment clause must yield to the police power of
the State.
The instant petition, being impressed with merit, is hereby GRANTED and the RTC decision
is SET ASIDE.

Defendant, on the other hand, filed a motion to dismiss on the ground that the complaint
had no cause of action against him and that it raises a political question.

The RTC Judge sustained the motion to dismiss, further ruling that granting of the relief
prayed for would result in the impairment of contracts which is prohibited by the
Constitution.

RULE 7
WRIT OF KALIKASAN
Section 1. Nature of the writ. - The writ is a remedy available to a natural or juridical
person, entity authorized by law, peoples organization, non-governmental organization, or
any public interest group accredited by or registered with any government agency, on
behalf of persons whose constitutional right to a balanced and healthful ecology is violated,

or threatened with violation by an unlawful act or omission of a public official or employee,


or private individual or entity, involving environmental damage of such magnitude as to
prejudice the life, health or property of inhabitants in two or more cities or provinces.
Section 2. Contents of the petition. - The verified petition shall contain the following:
(a) The personal circumstances of the petitioner;
(b) The name and personal circumstances of the respondent or if the name
and personal circumstances are unknown and uncertain, the respondent may
be described by an assumed appellation;
(c) The environmental law, rule or regulation violated or threatened to be
violated, the act or omission complained of, and the environmental damage of
such magnitude as to prejudice the life, health or property of inhabitants in two
or more cities or provinces.
(d) All relevant and material evidence consisting of the affidavits of witnesses,
documentary evidence, scientific or other expert studies, and if possible, object
evidence;
(e) The certification of petitioner under oath that: (1) petitioner has not
commenced any action or filed any claim involving the same issues in any
court, tribunal or quasi-judicial agency, and no such other action or claim is
pending therein; (2) if there is such other pending action or claim, a complete
statement of its present status; (3) if petitioner should learn that the same or
similar action or claim has been filed or is pending, petitioner shall report to the
court that fact within five (5) days therefrom; and
(f) The reliefs prayed for which may include a prayer for the issuance of a
TEPO.
Section 3. Where to file. - The petition shall be filed with the Supreme Court or with any of
the stations of the Court of Appeals.
Section 4. No docket fees. - The petitioner shall be exempt from the payment of docket
fees.
Section 5. Issuance of the writ. - Within three (3) days from the date of filing of the petition,
if the petition is sufficient in form and substance, the court shall give an order: (a) issuing
the writ; and (b) requiring the respondent to file a verified return as provided in Section 8 of
this Rule. The clerk of court shall forthwith issue the writ under the seal of the court
including the issuance of a cease and desist order and other temporary reliefs effective until
further order.
Section 6. How the writ is served. - The writ shall be served upon the respondent by a
court officer or any person deputized by the court, who shall retain a copy on which to make
a return of service. In case the writ cannot be served personally, the rule on substituted
service shall apply.
Section 7. Penalty for refusing to issue or serve the writ. - A clerk of court who unduly
delays or refuses to issue the writ after its allowance or a court officer or deputized person
who unduly delays or refuses to serve the same shall be punished by the court for contempt
without prejudice to other civil, criminal or administrative actions.
Section 8. Return of respondent; contents. - Within a non-extendible period of ten (10)
days after service of the writ, the respondent shall file a verified return which shall contain
all defenses to show that respondent did not violate or threaten to violate, or allow the
violation of any environmental law, rule or regulation or commit any act resulting to
environmental damage of such magnitude as to prejudice the life, health or property of
inhabitants in two or more cities or provinces.
All defenses not raised in the return shall be deemed waived.
The return shall include affidavits of witnesses, documentary evidence, scientific or other
expert studies, and if possible, object evidence, in support of the defense of the respondent.
A general denial of allegations in the petition shall be considered as an admission thereof.
Section 9. Prohibited pleadings and motions. - The following pleadings and motions are
prohibited:
(a) Motion to dismiss;
(b) Motion for extension of time to file return;
(c) Motion for postponement;
(d) Motion for a bill of particulars;
(e) Counterclaim or cross-claim;
(f) Third-party complaint;
(g) Reply; and
(h) Motion to declare respondent in default.
Section 10. Effect of failure to file return. - In case the respondent fails to file a return, the
court shall proceed to hear the petition ex parte.
Section 11. Hearing. - Upon receipt of the return of the respondent, the court may call a
preliminary conference to simplify the issues, determine the possibility of obtaining
stipulations or admissions from the parties, and set the petition for hearing.
The hearing including the preliminary conference shall not extend beyond sixty (60) days
and shall be given the same priority as petitions for the writs of habeas corpus, amparo and
habeas data.
Section 12. Discovery Measures. - A party may file a verified motion for the following
reliefs:
(a) Ocular Inspection; order The motion must show that an ocular inspection
order is necessary to establish the magnitude of the violation or the threat as to
prejudice the life, health or property of inhabitants in two or more cities or
provinces. It shall state in detail the place or places to be inspected. It shall be
supported by affidavits of witnesses having personal knowledge of the violation
or threatened violation of environmental law.

After hearing, the court may order any person in possession or control of a
designated land or other property to permit entry for the purpose of inspecting
or
photographing the property or any relevant object or operation thereon.
The order shall specify the person or persons authorized to make the
inspection and the date, time, place and manner of making the inspection and
may prescribe other conditions to protect the constitutional rights of all parties.
(b) Production or inspection of documents or things; order The motion must
show that a production order is necessary to establish the magnitude of the
violation or the threat as to prejudice the life, health or property of inhabitants in
two or more cities or provinces.
After hearing, the court may order any person in possession, custody or control
of any designated documents, papers, books, accounts, letters, photographs,
objects or tangible things, or objects in digitized or electronic form, which
constitute or contain evidence relevant to the petition or the return, to produce
and permit their inspection, copying or photographing by or on behalf of the
movant.
The production order shall specify the person or persons authorized to make the production
and the date, time, place and manner of making the inspection or production and may
prescribe other conditions to protect the constitutional rights of all parties.
Section 13. Contempt. - The court may after hearing punish the respondent who refuses or
unduly delays the filing of a return, or who makes a false return, or any person who
disobeys or resists a lawful process or order of the court for indirect contempt under Rule
71 of the Rules of Court.
Section 14. Submission of case for decision; filing of memoranda. - After hearing, the court
shall issue an order submitting the case for decision. The court may require the filing of
memoranda and if possible, in its electronic form, within a non-extendible period of thirty
(30) days from the date the petition is submitted for decision.
Section 15. Judgment. - Within sixty (60) days from the time the petition is submitted for
decision, the court shall render judgment granting or denying the privilege of the writ of
kalikasan.
The reliefs that may be granted under the writ are the following:
(a) Directing respondent to permanently cease and desist from committing acts
or neglecting the performance of a duty in violation of environmental laws
resulting in environmental destruction or damage;
(b) Directing the respondent public official, government agency, private person
or entity to protect, preserve, rehabilitate or restore the environment;
(c) Directing the respondent public official, government agency, private person
or entity to monitor strict compliance with the decision and orders of the court;
(d) Directing the respondent public official, government agency, or private
person or entity to make periodic reports on the execution of the final judgment;
and
(e) Such other reliefs which relate to the right of the people to a balanced and
healthful ecology or to the protection, preservation, rehabilitation or restoration
of the
environment, except the award of damages to individual petitioners.
Section 16. Appeal. - Within fifteen (15) days from the date of notice of the adverse
judgment or denial of motion for reconsideration, any party may appeal to the Supreme
Court under Rule 45 of the Rules of Court. The appeal may raise questions of fact.
Section 17. Institution of separate actions. - The filing of a petition for the issuance of the
writ of kalikasan shall not preclude the filing of separate civil, criminal or administrative
actions.

In re Yamashita
Facts: General Tomoyuki Yamashita is the Commanding General of the Japanese
ImperialArmy. When he surrendered in 1945, an American military
commission tried him oncharges that he permitted atrocities against
both civilians and prisoners of war, inviolation of the law of war.The
bills of particulars, filed by the prosecution by order of the commission,
allege aseries of 123 acts, committed by members of the forces under
petitioner's command.The first item specifies the execution of a 'a
deliberate plan and purpose to massacre andexterminate a large part of
the civilian population of Batangas Province, and to devastateand
destroy public, private and religious property therein, as a result of
which more than25,000 men, women and children, all unarmed
noncombatant civilians, were brutallymistreated and killed, without
cause or trial, and entire settlements were devastated anddestroyed
wantonly and without military necessity.' Other items specify acts of
violence,cruelty and homicide inflicted upon the civilian population and
prisoners of war, acts ofwholesale pillage and the wanton destruction of
religious monuments. It is not denied that such acts directed against the
civilian population of an occupiedcountry and against prisoners of war
are recognized in international law as violations ofthe law of war under
Fourth Hague Convention. But it is urged t at the charge does notallege
that petitioner has either committed or directed the commission of such
acts, andconsequently that no violation is charged as against him. But
this overlooks the fact thatthe gist of the charge is an unlawful breach of
duty by petitioner as an army commanderto control the operations of
the members of his command by 'permitting them to commit'the
extensive and widespread atrocities specified. The question then is
whether the law of war imposes on an army commander a duty totake
such appropriate measures as are within his power to control the troops
under hiscommand for the prevention of the specified acts which are
violations of the law of warand which are likely to attend the occupation
of hostile territory by an uncontrolledsoldiery, and whether he may be
charged with personal responsibility for his failure totake such
measures when violations result. That this was the precise issue to be
tried wasmade clear by the statement of the prosecution at the opening
of the trial.
Issue:
Yamashitas counsel applied leave to file petitions for writs of habeas corpus
andprohibition, challenging the jurisdiction and legal authority of the
commission
.Held:
The writs were DENIED.The court found that Congress had legally authorized the
commission's establishmentunder the war powers, and that the charge
was adequate to state a violation of the law ofwar.It is evident that
the conduct of military operations by troops whose excesses
areunrestrained by the orders or efforts of their commander would
almost certainly result inviolations which it is the purpose of the law of
war to prevent. Its purpose to protectcivilian populations and prisoners
of war from brutality would largely be defeated if thecommander of an
invading army could with impunity neglect to take reasonable
measuresfor their protection. Hence the law of war presupposes that its
violation is to be avoidedthrough the control of the operations of war by
commanders who are to some extentresponsible for their
subordinates.Command responsibility, sometimes referred to as the
Yamashita standard or the Medinastandard, is the doctrine of
hierarchical accountability in cases of war crimes.

Thedoctrine was established by the Hague Conventions IV (1907) and X (1907).The


"Yamashita standard" is based upon the precedent set by the United
States SupremeCourt in the case of Japanese General Tomoyuki
Yamashita. He was prosecuted, in a stillcontroversial trial, for
atrocities committed by troops under his command in
thePhilippines. Yamashita was charged with "unlawfully
disregarding and failing todischarge his duty as a commander to
control the acts of members of his command bypermitting them to
commit war crimes."The "Medina standard" is based upon the
prosecution of US Army Captain ErnestMedina in connection with the
My Lai Massacre during the Vietnam War. It holds that acommanding
officer, being aware of a human rights violation or a war crime, will be
heldcriminally liable when he does not take action. (Medina was,
however, acquitted of allcharges.)

CASE CONCERNING THE BARCELONA TRACTION,


LIGHT AND POWER COMPANY, LIMITED
(SECOND PHASE)
Judgment of 5 February 1970
In its judgment in the second phase of the case concerning the Barcelona Traction, Light
and Power Company, Limited (New Application: 1962) (Belgium v. Spain), the Court
rejected Belgium's claim by fifteen votes to one.
The claim, which was brought before the Court on 19 June 1962, arose out of the
adjudication in bankruptcy in Spain of Barcelona Traction, a company incorporated in
Canada. Its object was to seek reparation for damage alleged by Belgium to have been
sustained by Belgian nationals, shareholders in the company, as a result of acts said to be
contrary to international law committed towards the company by organs of the Spanish
State.
The Court found that Belgium lacked jus standi to exercise diplomatic protection of
shareholders in a Canadian company with respect to measures taken against that company
in Spain.
Judges Petrn and Onyeama appended a joint declaration to the Judgment; Judge Lachs
appended a declaration. President Bustamante y Rivero and Judges Sir Gerald
Fitzmaurice, Tanka, Jessup, Morelli, Padilla Nervo, Gros and Ammoun appended Separate
Opinions.
Judge ad hoc Riphagen appended a Dissenting Opinion.
Background of Events in the Case
(paras. 8-24 of the Judgment)
The Barcelona Traction, Light and Power Company, Limited, was incorporated in 1911 in
Toronto (Canada), where it has its head office. For the purpose of creating and developing
an electric power production and distribution system in Catalonia (Spain) it formed a
number of subsidiary companies, of which some had their registered offices in Canada and
the others in Spain. In 1936 the subsidiary companies supplied the major part of Catalonia's
electricity requirements. According to the Belgian Government, some years after the first
world war Barcelona Traction share capital came to be very largely held by Belgian
nationals, but the Spanish Government contends that the Belgian nationality of the
shareholders is not proven.
Barcelona Traction issued several series of bonds, principally in sterling. The sterling bonds
were serviced out of transfers to Barcelona Traction effected by the subsidiary companies
operating in Spain. In 1936 the servicing of the Barcelona Traction bonds was suspended
on account of the Spanish civil war. After that war the Spanish exchange control authorities
refused to authorize the transfer of the foreign currency necessary for the resumption of the
servicing of the sterling bonds. Subsequently, when the Belgian Government complained of
this, the Spanish Government stated that the transfers could not be authorized unless it
were shown that the foreign currency was to be used to repay debts arising from the
genuine importation of foreign capital into Spain and that this had not been established.
In 1948 three Spanish holders of recently acquired Barcelona Traction sterling bonds
petitioned the court of Reus (Province of Tarragona) for a declaration adjudging the
company bankrupt, on account of failure to pay the interest on the bonds. On 12 February
1948 a judgment was given declaring the company bankrupt and ordering the seizure of the
assets of Barcelona Traction and of two of its subsidiary companies. Pursuant to this

judgment the principal management personnel of the two companies were dismissed and
Spanish directors appointed. Shortly afterwards, these measures were extended to the
other subsidiary companies. New shares of the subsidiary companies were created, which
were sold by public auction in 1952 to a newly-formed company, Fuerzas Electricas de
Cataluna, S.A. (Fecsa), which thereupon acquired complete control of the undertaking in
Spain.
Proceedings were brought without success in the Spanish courts by various companies or
persons. According to the Spanish Government, 2,736 orders were made in the case and
494 judgments given by lower and 37 by higher courts before it was submitted to the
International Court of Justice. The Court found that in 1948 Barcelona Traction, which had
not received a judicial notice of the bankruptcy proceedings, and was not represented
before the Reus court, took no proceedings in the Spanish courts until 18 June and thus did
not enter a plea of opposition against the bankruptcy judgment within the time-limit of eight
days from the date of publication of the judgment laid down in Spanish legislation. The
Belgian Government contends, however, that the notification and publication did not comply
with the relevant legal requirements and that the eight-day time-limit never began to run.
Representations were made to the Spanish Government by the British, Canadian,
United States and Belgian Governments as from 1948 or 1949. The interposition of the
Canadian Government ceased entirely in 1955.
Proceedings before the International Court and the Nature of the Claim
(paras. 1-7 and 26-31 of the Judgment)
The Belgian Government filed a first Application with the Court against the Spanish
Government in 1958. In 1961 it gave notice of discontinuance of the proceedings, with a
view to negotiations between the representatives of the private interests concerned, and the
case was removed from the Court's General List. The negotiations having failed, the
Belgian Government on 19 June 1962 submitted to the Court a new Application. In 1963 the
Spanish Government raised four preliminary objections to this Application. By its Judgment
of 24 July 1964, the Court rejected the first and second objections and joined the third and
fourth to the merits.
In the subsequent written and oral proceedings the Parties supplied abundant material and
information. The Court observed that the unusual length of the proceedings was due to the
very long time-limits requested by the Parties for the preparation of their written pleadings
and to their repeated requests for an extension of chose limits. The Court did not find that it
should refuse those requests, but it remained convinced that it was in the interest of the
authority of international justice for cases to be decided without unwarranted delay.
The claim submitted to the Court had been presented on behalf of natural and juristic
persons, alleged to be Belgian nationals and shareholders in Barcelona Traction, a
company incorporated in Canada and having its head office there. The object of the
Application was reparation for damage allegedly caused to those persons by the conduct,
said to be contrary to international law, of various organs of the Spanish State towards that
company.
The third preliminary objection of the Spanish Government, which had been joined to the
merits, was to the effect that the Belgian Government lacked capacity to submit any claim in
respect of wrongs done to a Canadian company even if the shareholders were Belgian. The
fourth preliminary objection, which was also joined to the merits, was to the effect that local
remedies available in Spain had not been exhausted.
The case submitted to the Court principally concerned three States, Belgium, Spain and
Canada, and it was accordingly necessary to deal with a series of problems arising out of
this triangular relationship.
The Belgian Government's jus standi
(paras. 32-101 of the Judgment)
The Court first addressed itself to the question, raised by the third preliminary objection,
which had been joined to the merits, of the right of Belgium to exercise diplomatic protection
of Belgian shareholders in a company incorporated in Canada, the measures complained of
having been taken in relation not to any Belgian national but to the company itself.
The Court observed that when a State admitted into its territory foreign investments or
foreign nationals it was bound to extend to them the protection of the law and assumed
obligations concerning the treatment to be afforded them. But such obligations were not
absolute. In order to bring a claim in respect of the breach of such an obligation, a State
must first establish its right to do so.
In the field of diplomatic protection, international law was in continuous evolution and was
called upon to recognize institutions of municipal law. In municipal law, the concept of the
company was founded on a firm distinction between the rights of the company and those of
the shareholder. Only the company, which was endowed with legal personality, could take
action in respect of matters that were of a corporate character. A wrong done to the
company frequently caused prejudice to its shareholders, but this did not imply that both
were entitled to claim compensation. Whenever a shareholder's interests were harmed by
an act done to the company, it was to the latter that he had to look to institute appropriate
action. An act infringing only the company's rights did not involve responsibility towards the
shareholders, even if their interests were affected. In order for the situation to be different,
the act complained of must be aimed at the direct rights of the shareholder as such (which
was not the case here since the Belgian Government had itself admitted that it had not
based its claim on an infringement of the direct rights of the shareholders).
International law had to refer to those rules generally accepted by municipal legal systems.
An injury to the shareholder's interests resulting from an injury to the rights of the company
was insufficient to found a claim. Where it was a question of an unlawful act committed
against a company representing foreign capital, the general rule of international law
authorized the national State of the company alone to exercise diplomatic protection for the

purpose of seeking redress. No rule of international law expressly conferred such a right on
the shareholder's national State.
The Court considered whether there might not be, in the present case, special
circumstances for which the general rule might not take effect. Two situations needed to be
studied: (a) the case of the company having ceased to exist, and (b) the case of the
protecting State of the company lacking capacity to take action. As regards the first of these
possibilities, the Court observed that whilst Barcelona Traction had lost all its assets in
Spain and been placed in receivership in Canada, it could not be contended that the
corporate entity of the company had ceased to exist or that it had lost its capacity to take
corporate action. So far as the second possibility was concerned, it was not disputed that
the company had been incorporated in Canada and had its registered office in that country,
and its Canadian nationality had received general recognition. The Canadian Government
had exercised the protection of Barcelona Traction for a number of years. If at a certain
point the Canadian Government ceased to act on behalf of Barcelona Traction, it
nonetheless retained its capacity to do so, which the Spanish Government had not
questioned. Whatever the reasons for the Canadian Government's change of attitude, that
fact could not constitute a justification for the exercise of diplomatic protection by another
government.
It had been maintained that a State could make a claim when investments by its nationals
abroad, such investments being part of a State's national economic resources, were
prejudicially affected in violation of the right of the State itself to have its nationals enjoy a
certain treatment. But, in the present state of affairs, such a right could only result from a
treaty or special agreement. And no instrument of such a kind was in force between
Belgium and Spain.
It had also been maintained that, for reasons of equity, a State should be able, in certain
cases, to take up the protection of its nationals, shareholders in a company which had been
the victim of a violation of international law. The Court considered that the adoption of the
theory of diplomatic protection of shareholders as such would open the door to competing
claims on the part of different States, which could create an atmosphere of insecurity in
international economic relations. In the particular circumstances of the present case, where
the company's national State was able to act, the Court was not of the opinion
that jus standi was conferred on the Belgian Government by considerations of equity.
The Court's Decision
(paras. 102 and 103 of the Judgment)
The Court took cognizance of the great amount of documentary and other evidence
submitted by the Parties and fully appreciated the importance of the legal problems raised
by the allegation which was at the root of the Belgian claim and which concerned denials of
justice allegedly committed by organs of the Spanish State. However, the possession by the
Belgian Government of a right of protection was a prerequisite for the examination of such
problems. Since no jus standi before the Court had been established, it was not for the
Court to pronounce upon any other aspect of the case.
Accordingly, the Court rejected the Belgian Government's claim by 15 votes to 1, 12 votes
of the majority being based on the reasons set out above.
DECLARATIONS AND SEPARATE AND
DISSENTING OPINIONS
Judge ad hoc Riphagen appended to the Judgment a Dissenting Opinion in which he stated
that he was unable to concur in the Judgment as the legal reasoning followed by the Court
appeared to him to fail to appreciate the nature of the rules of customary public international
law applicable in the present case.
Among the fifteen members of the majority, three supported the operative provisions of the
Judgment (rejecting the Belgian Government's claim) for different reasons, and appended
Separate Opinions to the Judgment. Judge Tanka stated that the two preliminary objections
joined to the merits ought to have been dismissed, but that the Belgian Government's
allegation concerning denials of justice was unfounded. Judge Jessup came to the
conclusion that a State, under certain circumstances, had a right to present a diplomatic
claim on behalf of shareholders who were its nationals but that Belgium had not succeeded
in proving the Belgian nationality, between the critical dates, of those natural and juristic
persons on whose behalf it had sought to claim. Judge Gros held that it was the State
whose national economy was adversely affected that possessed the right to take action but
that proof of Barcelona Traction appurtenance to the Belgian economy had not been
produced.
Among the twelve members of the majority who supported the operative provision of the
Judgment on the basis of the reasoning set out in the Judgment (lack of jus standi on the
part of the shareholders' national State), President Bustamante y Rivero and Judges Sir
Gerald Fitzmaurice, Morelli, Padilla Nervo and Ammoun (Separate Opinions) and Judges
Padrone and Onyeama (joint declaration) and Judge Lachs (declaration) stated that
nevertheless there were certain differences between their reasoning and that contained in
the Judgment, or that there were certain observations which they wished to add.
(Judge Sir Muhammad Zafrulla Khan had informed the President at the beginning of the
Preliminary Objections stage that, having been consulted by one of the Parties concerning
the case before his election as a Member of the Court, he considered that he ought not to
participate in its decision.)
NEER CLAIM - US v. Mexico, 4 RIAA (1926) Neer Claim
CASE SUMMARY

Facts: In 1924, Paul Neer, an American citizen, was killed in Mexico by a group of armed
men. This claim was presented to the U.S.Mexico General Claims Commission alleging
that the Mexican authorities had shown culpable lack of diligence in prosecuting the
culprits.
Held: The claim must be disallowed, since there was no evidence of such lack of diligence
as to constitute an international delinquency: the propriety of governmental acts was
decided according to international minimum standards, and the treatment of an alien, in
order to constitute an international delinquency, should amount to an outrage, to bad faith,
to willful neglect of duty, or to an insufficiency of governmental action so far short of
international standards that every reasonable and impartial man would readily recognize its
insufficiency, it being immaterial whether the insufficiency proceeds from deficient
execution of an intelligent law or from the fact the laws of the country do not empower the
authorities to measure up to international standards.

CASE EXCERPTS
This claim is presented by the United States against the United Mexican States in behalf of
L. Fay H. Neer, widow, and Pauline E. Neer, daughter, of Paul Neer, who, at the time of his
death, was employed as superintendent of a mine in the vicinity of Guanacevi, State of
Durango, Mexico. On November 16, 1924, about eight o'clock in the evening, when he and
his wife were proceeding on horseback from the village of Guanacevi to their home in the
neighborhood, they were stopped by a number of armed men who engaged Neer in a
conversation, which Mrs. Neer did not understand, in the midst of which bullets seem to
have been exchanged and Neer was killed. It is alleged that, on account of this killing, his
wife and daughter, American citizens, sustained damages in the sum of $100,000.00; that
the Mexican authorities showed an unwarrantable lack of diligence or an unwarrantable
lack of intelligent investigation in prosecuting the culprits; and that therefore the Mexican
Government ought to pay to the claimants the said amount.
As to lack of diligence, or lack of intelligent investigation, on the part of the Mexican
authorities, after the killing of Paul Neer had been brought to their notice, it would seem that
in the early morning after the tragedy these authorities might have acted in a more vigorous
and effective way than they did The Commission is mindful that the task of the local
Mexican authorities was hampered by the fact that the only eyewitness of the murder was
unable to furnish them any helpful information. There might have been reason for the higher
authorities of the State to intervene in the matter, as they apparently did. But in the view of
the Commission there is a long way between holding that a more active and more efficient
course of procedure might have been pursued, on the one hand, and holding that this
record presents such lack of diligence and of intelligent investigation as constitutes an
international delinquency, on the other hand.

corpse; that on November 17 the Judge proceeded to the examination of some witnesses,
among them Mrs. Neer; that investigations were continued for several days; that arrests
were made of persons suspected; and that they were subsequently released for want of
evidence. The American Agency in rebuttal offers nothing but affidavits stating individual
impressions or suppositions. In the light of the entire record in this case the Commission is
not prepared to hold that the Mexican authorities have shown such lack of diligence or such
lack of intelligent investigation in apprehending and punishing the culprits as would render
Mexico liable before this Commission. The Commission accordingly decides that the claim
of the United States is disallowed.

Separate opinion of Commissioner Fred K. Nielsen (p. 62-66)


The sovereign rights of a nation with regard to the enactment and execution of laws of this
character within its jurisdiction is of course well understood. Vattel, in asserting a general
principle in relation to these rights, adds some observations as to the respect that should be
accorded to the measures employed by nations in the exercise of such rights. He says:
"The sovereignty united to the domain establishes the jurisdiction of the nation in her
territories, or the country that belongs to her. It is her province, or that of her sovereign, to
exercise justice in all the places under her jurisdiction, to take cognizance of the crimes
committed, and the differences that arise in the country.
"Other nations ought to respect this right. And, as the administration of justice necessarily
requires that every definitive sentence, regularly pronounced, be esteemed just, and
executed as suchwhen once a cause in which foreigners are interested has been decided
in form, the sovereign of the defendants, can not hear their complaints. To undertake to
examine the justice of a definitive sentence is an attack on the jurisdiction of him who has
passed it. The prince, therefore, ought not to interfere in the causes of his subjects in
foreign countries, and grant them his protection, excepting in cases where justice is
refused, or palpable and evident injustice done, or rules and forms openly violated, or,
finally, an odius distinction made, to the prejudice of his subjects, or of foreigners in
general." Law of Nations. (Chitty's edit. 1869, Book II, pp. 165-166.)
Although there is this clear recognition in international law of the scope of sovereign rights
relating to matters that are subject of domestic regulation, it is also clear that the domestic
law and the measures employed to execute it must conform to the requirements of the
supreme law of members of the family of nations which is international law, and that any
failure to meet those requirements is a failure to perform a legal duty, and as such an
international delinquency. Hence a strict conformity by authorities of a government with its
domestic law is not necessarily conclusive evidence of the observance of legal duties
imposed by international law, although it may be important evidence on that point.

The Commission recognizes the difficulty of devising a general formula for determining the
boundary between an international delinquency of this type and an unsatisfactory use of
power included in national sovereignty. In 1910 John Bassett Moore observed that he did
"not consider it to be practicable to lay down in advance precise and unyielding formulas by
which the question of a denial of justice may in every instance be determined" (American
Journal of International Law, 1910, p. 787), and in 1923 De Lapradelle and Politis stated
that the evasive and complex character (le caractre fuyant et complexe) of a denial of
justice seems to defy any definition (Recueil des Aibitrages Internationaux, II, 1923, p. 280).
It is immaterial whether the expression "denial of justice" be taken in that broad sense in
which it applies to acts of executive and legislative authorities as well as to acts of the
courts, or whether it be used in a narrow sense which confines it to acts of judicial
authorities only; for in the latter case a reasoning, identical to that whichunder the name
of "denial of justice"applies to acts of the judiciary, will applybe it under a different name
to unwarranted acts of executive and legislative authorities. Without attempting to
announce a precise formula, it is in the opinion of the Commission possible to go a little
further than the authors quoted, and to hold (first) that the propriecy of governmental acts
should be put to the test of international standards, and (second) that the treatment of an
alien, in order to constitute an international delinquency, should amount to an outrage, to
bad faith, to wilful neglect of duty, or to an insufficiency of governmental action so far short
of international standards that every reasonable and impartial man would readily recognize
its insufficiency. Whether the insufficiency proceeds from deficient execution of an intelligent
law or from the fact that the laws of the country do not empower the authorities to measure
up to international standards is immaterial. (emphasis
supplied)

It may perhaps be said with a reasonable degree of precision that the propriety of
governmental acts should be determined according to ordinary standards of civilization,
even though standards differ considerably among members of the family of nations, equal
under the law. And it seems to be possible to indicate with still further precision the broad,
general ground upon which a demand for redress based on a denial of justice may be made
by one nation upon another. It has been said that such a demand is justified when the
treatment of an alien reveals an obvious error in the administration of justice, or fraud, or a
clear outrage. The thought is expressed to some extent in an opinion given by
Commissioner Bertinatti in the Medina case under the Convention of July 2, I860, between
Costa Rica and the United States in which it was said:

It is not for an international tribunal such as this Commission to decide, whether another
course of procedure taken by the local authorities at Guanacevi might have been more
effective. On the contrary, the grounds of liability limit its inquiry to whether there is
convincing evidence either (1) that the authorities administering the Mexican law acted in
an outrageous way, in bad faith, in wilful neglect of their duties, or in a pronounced degree
of improper action, or (2) that Mexican law rendered it impossible for them properly to fulfil
their task. No attempt is made to establish the second point. The first point is negatived by
the full record of police and judicial authorities produced by the Mexican Agent, though the
Commission feels bound to state once more that in its opinion better methods might have
been used. From this record it appears that the local authorities, on the very night of the
tragedy, November 16, went to the spot where the killing took place and examined the

There may of course be honest differences of opinion with respect to the character of
governmental acts, but it seems to be clear that an international tribunal is guided by a
reasonably certain and useful standard if it adheres to the position that in any given case
involving an allegation of a denial of justice it can award damages only on the basis of
convincing evidence of a pronounced degree of improper governmental administration.

"It being against the independence as well as the dignity of a nation that a foreign
government may interfere either with its legislation or the appointment of magistrates for the
administration of justice, the consequence is that in the protection of its subjects residing
abroad a government, in all matters depending upon the judiciary power, must confine itself
to secure for them free access to the local tribunals, besides an equality oj treatment with
the natives according to the conventional law established by treaties.
"Only a formal denial of justice, the dishonesty or prevaricatio of a judge legally proved, 'the
case of torture, the denial of the means of defense at the trial, or gross injustice, in re
minime dubia', (see opinion of Phillimore in the controversy between the governments of
Great Britain and Paraguay) may justify a government in extending further its protection."
Moore, International Arbitrations, Vol. 3, p. 2317.

It was argued in behalf of the United States that there was an unwarranted delay in steps
taken to apprehend the persons who killed Neer; that the proceedings of investigation were
of such a public character as to put persons implicated in the crime on guard and to enable
them to escape; that detectives might have been employed to apprehend the offenders. I

am of the opinion that better methods might have been used by the Mexican authorities,
and that the action taken by them may well be adversely criticized.
But in the light of the entire record in the case before us I am not prepared to decide that a
charge of a denial of justice can be maintained against the Government of Mexico
conformably to the principles which according to my views as above expressed should
govern the action of the Commission.
I accordingly concur in the decision that the claim of the United States is disallowed.

Jean-Baptiste Caire Claim(1929) - UK v. Albania, Corfu Channel Case, (1949) ICJ Rep
FACTS: On 11 December 1914, Jean-Baptiste Caire, a French national, was unlawfully
shot and killed at an army barracks in Mexico by two Mexican army officers, a major and a
captain aided by a few privates, after Caire refused a demand by one of the officers to pay
a sum of money. This prompted Caires widow to sue Mexico for indemnity.
ISSUE: WON Mexico is responsible for actions of individual military personnel acting
without orders or against the wishes of their commanding officers
HELD: YES. The French-Mexican Claims Commission held that Mexico was internationally
responsible for the conduct of the army officers. In this regard, Presiding Commissioner
Verzijl observed that, under the doctrine of objective responsibility (state responsibility for
the acts of state officials or state organs even in the absence of fault on the part of the
state), a state is internationally responsible for acts committed by its officials or organs
outside their competence if the officials or organs acted at least to all appearances as
competent officials or organs, or used powers or methods appropriate to their official
capacity .
Here, The officers in question consistently conducted themselves as officers ; in this
capacity they began by exacting the remittance of certain sums of money; they continued
by having the victim taken to a barracks of the occupying troops; and it was clearly because
of the refusal of Caire to meet their repeated demands that they finally shot him. Under
these circumstances, there remains no doubt that, even if they are to be regarded as
having acted outside their competence, which is by no means certain, and even if their
superior officers issued a counter-order, these two officers have involved the responsibility
of the State, in view of the fact that they acted in their capacity of officers and used the
means placed at their disposition by virtue of that capacity.
Indemnity awarded.
Corfu Channel Case (United Kingdom v. Albania)
The Corfu Channel Case
December 7, 2014 by admin Leave a Comment
By Aarti Goyal,
UILS, Chandigarh
Editors Note: The general principles of International law are among the sources of national
and International Law, which have long been recognized and applied in disputes. The Corfu
Channel case addressed the question of civil liability of Albania, which had placed mines
within its sovereign waters and subsequently caused damage to two naval Destroyers of
the United Kingdoms navy.
The exclusive territorial control exercised by Albania within its water frontiers has a bearing
on the burden of proof with respect to the countrys activity. The United Kingdom which was
an unfair victim of the mines placed in the Corfu strait and the International Court of Justice
found that Albania was responsible for loss of human life and the machinery suffered by the
United Kingdom, even though the United Kingdom had violated the sovereignty of Albanias
territorial waters. Compensation was hence ordered.
INTRODUCTION
General principles of International Law are among the sources of national and international
law which have long been recognized and applied in disputes between states. According to
Restatement of the Law (Third), the Foreign Relations of the United States, General
principles common to the major legal systems, even if not incorporated or reflected in
customary law or international agreement, may be invoked as supplementary rules of
international law where appropriate. Article 38 (1)(c) of the statute of the International Court
of Justice authorizes the Court to apply the general principle of law recognized by civilized
nations in addition to international conventions and custom, which are also the two main
sources of international law. It makes National legal systems as a source of law for the
creation of international law. The general principles constitute both the backbone of the

body of law governing international dealings and the potent cement that binds together the
various and often disparate cogs and wheels of the normative framework of the community.

Corfu Channel case, addressed the question of Albanian civil liability for the mining of the
Corfu Channel and subsequent damage to two British naval vessels that resulted from
striking mines. In discussing whether the United Kingdom could establish the knowledge
and responsibility of Albania for the laying of the mines, the Courts opinion stated: the fact
of this exclusive territorial control exercised by a State within its frontiers has a bearing
upon the methods of proof available to establish the knowledge of that State as to such
events. By reason of this exclusive control, the other State, the victim of a breach of
international law, is often unable to furnish direct proof of facts giving rise to responsibility.
Such a State should be allowed a more liberal recourse to inferences of fact and
circumstantial evidence. This indirect evidence is admitted in all systems of law and its use
is recognized by international decisions. It must be regarded as of special weight when it is
based on a series of facts linked together and leading logically to a single conclusion.[i]

On 22 October 1946 in the Corfu Strait, two British destroyers struck mines in Albanian
waters and suffered damage, including serious loss of life. On 22 May 1947, the
Government of the United Kingdom filed an Application instituting proceedings against the
Government of the Peoples Republic of Albania seeking a decision to the effect that the
Albanian Government was internationally responsible for the consequences of the incident
and must make reparation or pay compensation. Albania, for its part, had submitted a
counter-claim against the United Kingdom for having violated Albanian territorial waters. On
9 April 1949, the Court found that Albania was responsible for the explosions and for the
resulting damage and loss of human life suffered by the United Kingdom. The Court also
found that the later minesweeping by the United Kingdom had violated Albanian
sovereignty. On 19 December 1949, the Court ordered Albania to pay the United Kingdom
compensation.

GENERAL PRINCIPLES: MEANING AND CONCEPT

The General Principals of Law recognized by civilized nations form part of the law to be
applied by the permanent forum of family nations- the International Court of Justice.
General principles of law recognized by civilized nations or more appropriate: the
community of nations are a manifestation of international law. They are included in Article
38 Para 1 of the Statute of the International Court of Justice and have been classified as a
primary source. Sir Hersch Lauterpacht noted this provision was first introduced into the
Statute of the PCIJ by the Commission of Jurists charged with drawing it up in order to
avoid the problem of non-liquet the argument that a court could not decide a matter
because there was no law on the subject. If there is no treaty relevant to the dispute, or if
there is no rule of customary international law that can be applied, the court is directed to
apply general principles of law.[ii] The general principles of law recognized by civilized
nations comprise the third category of rules which the International Court of Justice must
apply in accordance with Article 38 of the Statute of International Court of Justice. The
phrase general principals of law recognized by civilized nations means principles so
general as to apply within all systems of law that have achieved a comparable state of
development.[iii]The Statute of the International Court of Justice authorizes the Court to
apply the general principles of law recognized by civilized nations in addition to international
conventions and customs, which are the two main sources of International Law. Professor
Gutteridge is of the view that the object of the invocation of the general principles is with a
view to providing the judges on the one hand, with a guide to the exercise of his choice of a
new principle and, on the other hand, to prevent him from blindly following the teaching of
the jurists with which he is most familiar without first carefully weighing the merits and
considering whether a principle of private law does in fact satisfy the demands of justice.
The Special Arbitral Tribunal between Germany and Portugal also applied the general
principles of law in the Maziua and Naulilla Cases where the arbitrators observed that in the
absence of rules on International Law applicable to the facts in dispute, they were of
opinion that it was their duty to fill the gap by applying principles of equity fully taking into
account the spirit of International Law, which is applied by way of analogy and its evolution.
[iv] Oppenheim states that, the intention is to authorize the court to apply the general
principles of municipal jurisprudence, in particular of private law, in so far as they are
applicable to relations of state.[v] In thus opening the way for the operation as international
law of general principles of municipal jurisprudence, it must be noted that such a principles
are in the municipal sphere applied against a background of national laws and procedures.
Unless there is some sufficient counterpart to them in the international sphere, or sufficient
allowance is made for them in abstracting the principle from various municipal rules, the
operation of the principle as source of particular rule of international law will be distorted.
At present, in the world community, two distinct classes of general principles may be relied
upon. First, there are general principles of international law, namely those principles which
can be inferred or extracted by way of induction and generalization from conventional and

customary rules of international law. Some of these principles have to be restated by States
in international instruments designed to set out the fundamental standards of behavior that
should govern the relations among members of the international community. Secondly,
there are principles that are peculiar to a particular branch of international law. These
Principles are general legal standards overarching the whole body of law governing a
specific area. Although generalized principles or concepts that may be termed community
value-judgments inform and pervade the political and therefore the legal orders in the
broadest sense, they do not themselves constitute as such binding legal norms. This can
only happen if they have been accepted as legal norms by the international community
through the mechanisms and techniques of international law creation.[vi] General principles
of law as source of international law enables rules of law to exist which can fill gaps or
weakness in the law which might otherwise be left by the operation of custom and treaty,
and provide a background of legal principles in the light of which customs and treaties have
to be applied and as such it may operate to modify their application. General principles of
law, however, do not have just a supplementary role, but may give rise to rules of
independent legal force.[vii]
CORFU CHANNEL CASE
The Corfu Channel case was the first contentious case heard by the International Court of
Justice, the supreme arbitration organ of the United Nations and one of the principal
sources of authoritative rulings on international law.
FACTS OF THE CASE:
On May 15th 1946 the British warships passed through the Channel without the approval of
the Albanian government and were shot at. Later, on October 22nd, 1946, a squadron of
British warships (two cruisers and two destroyers), left the port of Corfu and proceeded
northward through a channel previously swept for mines in the North Corfu Strait. Both
destroyers were struck by mine and were heavily damaged. This incident resulted also in
many deaths. The two ships were mined in Albanian territorial waters in a previously swept
and check-swept channel. After the explosions of October 22nd, the United Kingdom
Government sent a note to the Albanian Government, in which it announced its intention to
sweep the Corfu Channel shortly. The Albanian reply, which was received in London on
October 31st, stated that the Albanian Government would not give its consent to this unless
the operation in question took place outside Albanian territorial waters. Meanwhile, at the
United Kingdom Governments request, the International Central Mine Clearance Board
decided, in a resolution of November 1st, 1946, that there should be a further sweep of the
Channel, subject to Albanias consent. The United Kingdom Government having informed
the Albanian Government, in a communication of November 10th, that the proposed sweep
would take place on November 12th, the Albanian Government replied on the 11th,
protesting against this unilateral decision of His Majestys Government. It said it did not
consider it inconvenient that the British fleet should undertake the sweeping of the channel
of navigation, but added that, before sweeping was carried out, it considered it
indispensable to decide what area of the sea should be deemed to constitute this channel,
and proposed the establishment of a Mixed Commission for the purpose. It ended by
saying that any sweeping undertaken without the consent of the Albanian Government
outside the channel thus constituted, i.e., inside Albanian territorial waters where foreign
warships have no reason to sail, could only be considered as a deliberate violation of
Albanian territory and sovereignty. After this exchange of notes, Operation Retail took
place on November 12th and 13th. One fact of particular importance is that the North Corfu
Channel constitutes a frontier between Albania and Greece, that a part of it is wholly within
the territorial waters of these States, and that the Strait is of special importance to Greece
by reason of the traffic to and from the port of Corfu.
ISSUES:
The British government claimed the minefield which caused the explosions was laid
between May 15th, 1946, and October 22nd, 1946, by or with the approval or knowledge of
the Albanian Government. Thus Albania was responsible for the explosions and loss of life
and had to compensate the UK government. In addition to the passage of the United
Kingdom warships on October 22nd, 1946, the second question in the Special Agreement
relates to the acts of the Royal Navy in Albanian waters on November 12th and 13th, 1946
when the British government carried out a minesweeping operation called Operation Retail
without the consent of Albania. UK held the opinion the passage on October 22nd, 1946
was innocent and that according to rules of international law it had the right to innocent
passage through the North Corfu Channel as it is considered part of international highways
and does not need a previous approval of the territorial state. The Albanian Government
does not dispute that the North Corfu Channel is a strait in the geographical sense; but it
denies that this Channel belongs to the class of international highways through which a
right of passage exists, on the grounds that it is only of secondary importance and not even
a necessary route between two parts of the high seas, and that it is used almost exclusively
for local traffic to and from the ports of Corfu. Thus a previous approval of the territorial
state is necessary.
1) Should the North Corfu Channel as it is considered part of international highways?

2) Is Albania responsible under international law for the explosions which occurred on the
22nd October 1946 in Albanian waters and for the damage and loss of human life which
resulted from them and is there any duty to pay compensation?
ANALYSIS:
The court analyzed the geographical situation of the channel connecting two parts of the
high seas and was in fact frequently being used for international navigation. Taking into
account these various considerations, the Court concluded that the North Corfu Channel
should be considered as belonging to the class of international highways through which an
innocent passage does not need special approval and cannot be prohibited by a coastal
State in time of peace. The UK government claimed that on October 22nd, 1946, Albania
neither notified the existence of the minefield, nor warned the British warships of the danger
they were approaching.
According to the principle of state responsibility, they should have done all necessary steps
immediately to warn ships near the danger zone, more especially those that were
approaching that zone. In fact, nothing was attempted by the Albanian authorities to prevent
the disaster. These grave omissions involve the international responsibility of Albania.But
Albanias obligation to notify shipping of the existence of mines in her waters depends on
her having obtained knowledge of that fact in sufficient time before October 22nd; and the
duty of the Albanian coastal authorities to warn the British ships depends on the time that
elapsed between the moment that these ships were reported and the moment of the first
explosion.
CONCLUSION OF THE COURT:
The Court therefore reached the conclusion that Albania is responsible under international
law for the explosions which occurred on October 22nd, 1946, in Albanian waters, and for
the damage and loss of human life which resulted from them, and that there is a duty upon
Albania to pay compensation to the United Kingdom.
In the second part of the Special Agreement, the following question is submitted to the
Court:
Has the United Kingdom under international law violated the sovereignty of the Albanian
Peoples Republic by reason of the acts of the Royal Navy in Albanian waters on the 22nd
October and on the 12th and 13th November 1946 and is there any duty to give
satisfaction?
Albania was in fact in war with Greece which means that the coastal state was not in time of
peace. UK had not an innocent passage due to the way it was carried out. The court
assessed the manner of UK warships after they had been shot at May 15th. Having thus
examined the various contentions of the Albanian Government in so far as they appear to
be relevant, the Court has arrived at the conclusion that the United Kingdom did not violate
the sovereignty of Albania by reason of the acts of the British Navy in Albanian waters on
October 22nd, 1946. The United Kingdom Government does not dispute that Operation
Retail was carried out against the clearly expressed wish of the Albanian Government. It
recognizes that the operation had not the consent of the international mine clearance
organizations, that it could not be justified as the exercise of a right of innocent passage,
and lastly that, in principle, international law does not allow a State to assemble a large
number of warships in the territorial waters of another State and to carry out minesweeping
in those waters. The United Kingdom Government states that the operation was one of
extreme urgency, and that it considered itself entitled to carry it out without anybodys
consent. The Court can only regard the alleged right of intervention as the manifestation of
a policy of force, such as has, in the past, given rise to most serious abuses and such as
cannot, whatever be the present defects in international organization, The United Kingdom
Agent, in his speech in reply, has further classified Operation Retail among methods of
self-protection or self-help. The Court cannot accept this defense either find a place in
international law.
Final conclusion of the court:
On the first question put by the Special Agreement of March 25th, 1948,
The court gives judgment that the Peoples Republic of Albania is responsible under
international law for the explosions which occurred on October 22nd, 1946, in Albanian
waters, and for the damage and loss of human life that resulted there from; and Reserves
for further consideration the assessment of the amount of compensation and regulates the
procedure on this subject.
2) On the second question put by the Special Agreement on the violation of state
sovereignty, The court gives judgment that the United Kingdom did not violate the
sovereignty of the Peoples Republic of Albania by reason of the acts of the British Navy
in Albanian waters on October 22nd, 1946; and unanimously, gave judgment that by
reason of the acts of the British Navy in Albanian waters in the course of the Operation of
November 12th and 13th, 1946, the United Kingdom violated the sovereignty of the
Peoples Republic of Albania, and that this declaration by the Court constitutes in itself
appropriate satisfaction.

OBSERVATION OF GENERAL PRINCIPLES IN CASE

between the parties. The objection to the jurisdiction in the case of compensation was
therefore not accepted by the court as it applied the principle of res judicata.
CIRCUMSTANTIAL EVIDENCE:

THE THEORY OF RESPONSIBILITY:


ILC DRAFT ARTICLES ON RESPONSIBILITY OF STATES FOR INTERNATIONALLY
WRONGFUL ACTS
(Report of the 53rd Sess., ILC (2001), G.A.O.R. 56th Sess., Supp.10)
Part One: The Internationally Wrongful Act of a State
General Principles
Article 1: Every Internationally wrongful act of a State entails the International responsibility
of that State.
It states the basic principle underlying the articles as a whole, which is that a breach of
international law by a State entails its international responsibility

In cases where direct evidence of a fact is not available, it is a general principle of law that
proof may be administered by means of circumstantial evidence. In the Corfu Channel
Case (Merits) (1949), before the International Court of Justice, Judge Azevedo said in his
dissenting opinion: A condemnation, even to the death penalty, may be well-founded on
indirect evidence and may nevertheless have the same value as a judgment by a court
which has founded its conviction on the evidence of witnesses. It would be going too far for
an international court to insist on direct and visual evidence and to refuse to admit, after
reflection, a reasonable amount of human presumptions with a view to reaching that state
of moral, human certainty with which, despite the risks of occasional errors, a court of
justice must be content. This part of his opinion is in agreement with the majority decision,
which, in admitting proof by inferences of fact (presomptions de fait) or circumstantial
evidence, held that: This indirect evidence is admitted in all systems of law, and its use is
recognised by international decisions. It must be regarded as of special weight when it is
based on a series of facts linked together and leading logically to a single conclusion . . .
The proof may be drawn from inferences of fact (presomptions de fait), provided that they
leave no room for reasonable doubt.[xii]
ELEMENTARY CONSIDERATIONS OF HUMANITY

The international Court of Justice has applied the principle in the Corfu Channel case
(7) The articles deal only with the responsibility of States. Of course, as the international
Court of Justice affirmed in the Reparation for Injuries case, the United Nations is a subject
of international law and capable of possessing international rights and duties. It has the
capacity to maintain its rights by bringing international claims The Court has also drawn
attention to the responsibility of the United Nations for the conduct of its organs or agents.
It may be that the notion of responsibility for wrongful conduct is a basis element in the
possession of international legal personality. Nonetheless special considerations apply to
the responsibility of other international legal persons, and these are not covered in the
articles [viii]
Facts:
On 22nd October 1946, a squadron of British warships, the cruisers Mauritius and Leander
and destroyers Saumarez and Volage, left the port of Corfu and proceeded northwards
through a channel previously swept for mines in the North Corfu Strait. Outside the Bay of
Saranda, Saumarez struck a mine and was heavily damaged. [ix]Whilst towing the
damaged ship, Volage struck a mine and was much damaged. Following the incident, the
United Kingdom carried out minesweeping operations on 12 and 13 November 1946 in the
North Corfu Channel. Twentytwo more mines were found.
By the first part of the Special Agreement, the following question was submitted to the
Court:
1) Is Albania responsible under International law for explosions which occurred on 22nd
October,1946 in Albanian waters and for the damage and loss of human life which resulted
from then and is there any duty to pay compensation
Held:
In its Judgment the Court declared on the first question, by 11 votes against 5, that Albania
was responsible under international law for the explosions, which occurred in Albanian
waters.
PRINCIPLE OF RES JUDICATA:

The obligations incumbent upon the Albanian authorities consisted in notifying, for the
benefit of shipping in general, the existence of a minefield in Albanian territorial waters and
in warning the approaching British warships of the imminent danger to which the minefield
exposed them. Such obligations are based, not on the Hague Convention of 1907, No. VIII,
which is applicable in time of war, but on certain general and well-recognized principles,
namely: elementary considerations of humanity, even more exacting in peace than in war;
the principle of the freedom of maritime communication; and every States obligation not to
allow knowingly its territory to be used for acts contrary to the rights of other States. [xiii]

Summary of the Summary of the Judgment of 24 May 1980


CASE CONCERNING UNITED STATES DIPLOMATIC AND
CONSULAR STAFF IN TEHRAN
US VS IRAN 1980 ICJ REP
Judgment of 24 May 1980
In its Judgment in the case concerning United States Diplomatic and Consular Staff in
Tehran, the Court decided (1) that Iran has violated and is skill violating obligations owed by
it to the United States; (2) that these violations engage Iran's responsibility; (3) that the
Government of Iran must immediately release the United States nationals held as hostages
and place the premises of the Embassy in the hands of the protecting power; (4) that no
member of the United States diplomatic or consular staff may be kept in Iran to be
subjected to any form of judicial proceedings or to participate in them as a witness; (5) that
Iran is under an obligation to make reparation for the injury caused to the United States,
and (6) that the form and amount of such reparation, failing agreement between the parties,
shall be settled by the Court. (The full text of the operative paragraph is reproduced below.)
These decisions were adopted by large majorities: (1) and (2) - 13 votes to 2; (3) and (4) unanimously; (5) - 12 votes to 3; (6) - 14 votes to 1 (the votes are recorded by name
below).
*
**

The term Res Judicata means a matter that has been adjudicated by a competent court and
therefore may not be pursued further by the same parties. Blacks Law Dictionary defines
Res Judicata as an issue that has been definitively settled by judicial decision.[x]
The judgment dated December 15, 1949, in the Corfu Channel Case; the Court accepted
the plea of Res Judicata in emphatic terms. It observed:The Albanian government disputed the jurisdiction if the court with regard to the
assessment of damages. The court may confine itself to stating that this jurisdiction was
established by its judgment of April 9, 1949 that in accordance with the statute (Article 60),
which, for the settlement of the present dispute, is binding upon the Albanian government
that judgment is final and without appeal, and that therefore, the matter is res judicata.[xi]
The matter regarding the jurisdiction was already decided by the Court in its judgement
dated April 9, 1949. Therefore, the matter between the parties had already been settled

A separate opinion was appended to the Judgment by Judge Lachs, who voted against
operative paragraph 5. Dissenting opinions were appended by Judge Morozov, who voted
against paragraphs 1, 2, 5 and 6, and by Judge Tarazi, who voted against paragraphs 1, 2
and 5.
Procedure before the Court (paras. 1-10)
In its Judgment, the Court recalls that on 29 November 1979 the United States of America
had instituted proceedings against Iran in a case arising out of the situation at its Embassy
in Tehran and Consulates at Tabriz and Shiraz, and the seizure and detention as hostages
of its diplomatic and consular staff in Tehran and two more citizens of the United States.
The United States having at the same time requested the indication of provisional
measures, the Court, by a unanimous Order of 15 December 1979, indicated, pending final
judgment, that the Embassy should immediately be given back and the hostages released
(see Press Communiqu No. 80/1).
The procedure then continued in accordance with the Statute and Rules of Court. The
United States filed a Memorial, and on 18, 19 and 20 March 1980 the Court held a public

hearing at the close of which the United States, in its final submissions, requested it to
adjudge and declare, inter alia, that the Iranian Government had violated its international
legal obligations to the United States and must: ensure the immediate release of the
hostages; afford the United States diplomatic and consular personnel the protection and
immunities to which they were entitled (including immunity from criminal jurisdiction) and
provide them with facilities to leave Iran; submit the persons responsible for the crimes
committed to the competent Iranian authorities for prosecution, or extradite them to the
United States; and pay the United States reparation, in a sum to be subsequently
determined by the Court.

nothing to prevent the attack, stop it before it reached its completion or oblige the militants
to withdraw from the premises and release the hostages. This inaction was in contrast with
the conduct of the Iranian authorities on several similar occasions at the same period, when
they had taken appropriate steps. It constituted, the Court finds, a clear and serious
violation of Iran's obligations to the United States under Articles 22 (2), 24, 25, 26, 27 and
29 of the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, of Articles 5 and 36 of the 1963
Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, and of Article 11 (4) of the 1955 Treaty. Further
breaches of the 1963 Convention had been involved in failure to protect the Consulates at
Tabriz and Shiraz.

Iran took no part in the proceedings. It neither filed pleadings nor was represented at the
hearing, and no submissions were therefore presented on its behalf. Its position was
however defined in two letters addressed to the Court by its Minister for Foreign Affairs on 9
December 1979 and16 March 1980 respectively. In these the Minister maintained inter alia
that the Court could not and should not take cognizance of the case.

The Court is therefore led to conclude that on 4 November 1979 the Iranian authorities
were fully aware of their obligations under the conventions in force, and also of the urgent
need for action on their part, that they had the means at their disposal to perform their
obligations, but that they completely failed to do so.

The Facts (paras. 11-32)


The Court expresses regret that Iran did not appear before it to put forward its arguments.
The absence of Iran from the proceedings brought into operation Article 53 of the Statute,
under which the Court is required, before finding in the Applicant's favour, to satisfy itself
that the allegations of fact on which the claim is based are well founded.
In that respect the Court observes that it has had available to it, in the documents
presented by the United States, a massive body of information from various sources,
including numerous official statements of both Iranian and United States authorities. This
information, the Court notes, is wholly concordant as to the main facts and has all been
communicated to Iran without evoking any denial. The Court is accordingly satisfied that the
allegations of fact on which the United States based its claim were well founded.
Admissibility (paras. 33-44)
Under the settled jurisprudence of the Court, it is bound, in applying Article 53 of its Statute,
to investigate, on its own initiative, any preliminary question of admissibility or jurisdiction
that may arise.
On the subject of admissibility, the Court, after examining the considerations put forward in
the two letters from Iran, finds that they do not disclose any ground for concluding that it
could not or should not deal with the case. Neither does it find any incompatibility with the
continuance of judicial proceedings before the Court in the establishment by the SecretaryGeneral of the United Nations, with the agreement of both States, of a Commission given a
mandate to undertake a fact-finding mission to Iran, hear Iran's grievances and facilitate the
solution of the crisis between the two countries.
Jurisdiction (paras. 45-55)
Four instruments having been cited by the United States as bases for the Court's
jurisdiction to deal with its claims, the Court finds that three, namely the Optional Protocols
to the two Vienna Conventions of 1961 and 1963 on, respectively, Diplomatic and Consular
Relations, and the 1955 Treaty of Amity, Economic Relations, and Consular Rights between
the United States and Iran, do in fact provide such foundations.
The Court, however, does not find it necessary in the present Judgment to enter into the
question whether Article 13 of the fourth instrument so cited, namely the 1973 Convention
on the Prevention and Punishment of Crimes against Internationally Protected Persons
including Diplomatic Agents, provides a basis for the exercise of its jurisdiction with respect
to the United States' claims thereunder.
MERITS: Attributability to the Iranian State of the acts complained of, and violation by Iran
of certain obligations (paras. 56-94)
The Court has also, under Article 53 of its Statute, to satisfy itself that the claims of the
Applicant are well founded in law. To this end, it considers the acts complained of in order to
determine how far, legally, they may be attributed to the Iranian State (as distinct from the
occupiers of the Embassy) and whether they are compatible or incompatible with Iran's
obligations under treaties in force or other applicable rules of international law.
(a) The events of 4 November 1979 (paras. 56-68)
The first phase of the events underlying the Applicant's claims covers the armed attack on
the United States Embassy carried out on 4 November 1979 by Muslim Student Followers
of the Imam's Policy (further referred to as "the militants" in the Judgment), the overrunning
of its premises, the seizure of its inmates as hostages, the appropriation of its property and
archives, and the conduct of the Iranian authorities in the face of these occurrences.
The Court points out that the conduct of the militants on that occasion could be directly
attributed to the Iranian State only if it were established that they were in fact acting on its
behalf. The information before the Court did not suffice to establish this with due certainty.
However, the Iranian State - which, as the State to which the mission was accredited, was
under obligation to take appropriate steps to protect the United States Embassy - did

(b) Events since 4 November 1979 (paras. 69-79)


The second phase of the events underlying the United States' claims comprises the whole
series of facts which occurred following the occupation of the Embassy by the militants.
Though it was the duty of the Iranian Government to take every appropriate step to end the
infringement of the inviolability of the Embassy premises and staff, and to offer reparation
for the damage, it did nothing of the kind. Instead, expressions of approval were
immediately heard from numerous Iranian authorities. Ayatollah Khomeini himself
proclaimed the Iranian State's endorsement of both the seizure of the premises and the
detention of the hostages. He described the Embassy as a "centre of espionage", declared
that the hostages would (with some exceptions) remain "under arrest" until the United
States had returned the former Shah and his property to Iran, and forbade all negotiation
with the United States on the subject. Once organs of the Iranian State had thus given
approval to the acts complained of and decided to perpetuate them as a means of pressure
on the United States, those acts were transformed into acts of the Iranian State: the
militants became agents of that State, which itself became internationally responsible for
their acts. During the six months which ensued, the situation underwent no material
change: the Court's Order of 15 December 1979 was publicly rejected by Iran, while the
Ayatollah declared that the detention of the hostages would continue until the new Iranian
parliament had taken a decision as to their fate.
The Iranian authorities' decision to continue the subjection of the Embassy to occupation,
and of its staff to detention as hostages, gave rise to repeated and multiple breaches of
Iran's treaty obligations, additional to those already committed at the time of the seizure of
the Embassy (1961 Convention: Arts. 22, 24, 25, 26, 27 and 29 1963 Convention: inter alia,
Art. 33; 1955 Treaty, Art. II (4)).
With regard to the Charg d'affaires and the two other members of the United States
mission who have been in the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs since 4 November 1979 the
Court finds that the Iranian authorities have withheld from them the protection and facilities
necessary to allow them to leave the Ministry in safety. Accordingly, it appears to the Court
that in their respect there have been breaches of Articles 26 and 29 of the 1961 Vienna
Convention.
Taking note, furthermore, that various Iranian authorities have threatened to have some of
the hostages submitted to trial before a court, or to compel them to bear witness, the Court
considers that, if put into effect, that intention would constitute a breach of Article 31 of the
same Convention.
(c) Possible existence of special circumstances (paras. 80-89)
The Court considers that it should examine the question whether the conduct of the Iranian
Government might be justified by the existence of special circumstances, for the Iranian
Minister for Foreign Affairs had alleged in his two letters to the Court that the United States
had carried out criminal activities in Iran. The Court considers that, even if these alleged
activities could be considered as proven, they would not constitute a defence to the United
States' claims, since diplomatic law provides the possibility of breaking off diplomatic
relations, or of declaring persona non "rata members of diplomatic or consular missions
who may be carrying on illicit activities. The Court concludes that the Government of Iran
had recourse to coercion against the United States Embassy and its staff instead of making
use of the normal means at its disposal.
(d) International responsibility (paras. 90-92)
The Court finds that Iran, by committing successive and continuing breaches of the
obligations laid upon it by the Vienna Conventions of 1961 and 1963, the 1955 Treaty, and
the applicable rules of general international law, has incurred responsibility towards the
United States. As a consequence, there is an obligation on the part of the Iranian State to
make reparation for the injury caused to the United States. Since, however, the breaches
are still continuing, the form and amount of such reparation cannot yet be determined.
At the same time the Court considers it essential to reiterate the observations it made in its
Order of 15 December 1979 on the importance of the principles of international law
governing diplomatic and consular relations. After stressing the particular gravity of the

case, arising out of the fact that it is not any private individuals or groups that have set at
naught the inviolability of an embassy, but the very government of the State to which the
mission is accredited, the Court draws the attention of the entire international community to
the irreparable harm that may be caused by events of the kind before the Court. Such
events cannot fail to undermine a carefully constructed edifice of law the maintenance of
which is vital for the security and well-being of the international community.
(e) United States operation in Iran on 24-25 April 1980 (paras. 93 and 94)
With regard to the operation undertaken in Iran by United States military units on 24-25
April 1980, the Court says that it cannot fail to express its concern. It feels bound to observe
that an operation undertaken in those circumstances, from whatever motive, is of a kind
calculated to undermine respect for the judicial process in international relations.
Nevertheless, the question of the legality of that operation can have no bearing on the
evaluation of Iran's conduct on 4 November 1979. The findings reached by the Court are
therefore not affected by that operation.
*
**
For these reasons, the Court gives the decision reproduced in full below.
OPERATIVE PART OF JUDGMENT
THE COURT,* [Composed as follows: President Sir Humphrey Waldock; Vice-President
Elias; Judges Forster, Gros, Lachs, Morozov, Nagendra Singh, Ruda, Mosler, Tarazi, Oda,
Ago, El-Erian, Sette-Camara and Baxter.]
1. By thirteen votes [President Sir Humphrey Waldock; Vice-President Elias; Judges
Forster, Gros, Lachs, Nagendra Singh, Ruda, Mosler, Oda, Ago, El-Erian, Sette-Camara
and Baxter.] to two [Judges Morozov and Tarazi.],
Decides that the Islamic Republic of Iran, by the conduct which the Court has set out in this
Judgment, has violated in several respects, and is skill violating, obligations owed by it to
the United States of America under international conventions in force between the two
countries, as well as under long-established rules of general international law;
2. By thirteen votes [President Sir Humphrey Waldock; Vice-President Elias; Judges
Forster, Gros, Lachs, Nagendra Singh, Ruda, Mosler, Oda, Ago, El-Erian, Sette-Camara
and Baxter.] to two [Judges Morozov and Tarazi.],
Decides that the violations of these obligations engage the responsibility of the Islamic
Republic of Iran towards the United States of America under international law;
3. Unanimously,
Decides that the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran must immediately take all
steps to redress the situation resulting from the events of 4 November 1979 and what
followed from these events, and to that end:
(a) must immediately terminate the unlawful detention of the United States Charg
d'affaires and other diplomatic and consular staff and other United States nationals now
held hostage in Iran, and must immediately release each and every one and entrust them to
the protecting Power (Article 45 of the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations);
(b) must ensure that all the said persons have the necessary means of leaving Iranian
territory, including means of transport;
(c) must immediately place in the hands of the protecting Power the premises, property,
archives and documents of the United States Embassy in Tehran and of its Consulates in
Iran;
4. Unanimously,
Decides that no member of the United States diplomatic or consular staff may be kept in
Iran to be subjected to any form of judicial proceedings or to participate in them as a
witness;
5. By twelve votes [President Sir Humphrey Waldock; Vice-President Elias; Judges Forster,
Gros, Nagendra Singh, Ruda, Mosler, Oda, Ago, El-Erian, Sette-Camara and Baxter.] to
three [JudgesLachs, Morozov and Tarazi.],
Decides that the Government of the Islamic Republic of ban is under an obligation to make
reparation to the Government of the United States of America for the injury caused to the
latter by the events of 4 November 1979 and what followed from these events;
6. By fourteen votes [President Sir Humphrey Waldock; Vice-President Elias; Judges
Forster, Gros, Lachs, Nagendra Singh, Ruda, Mosler, Tarazi, Oda, Ago, El-Erian, SetteCamara and Baxter.] to one [Judge Morozov.],

Decides that the form and amount of such reparation, failing agreement between the
Parties, shall be settled by the Court, and reserves for this purpose the subsequent
procedure in the case.
__________
SUMMARY OF OPINIONS APPENDED TO THE JUDGMENT
Judge Lachs indicated that he voted against the first part of operative paragraph 5, as he
found it redundant. The responsibility having been established, the whole question of
reparations should have been left to the subsequent procedure, including the question of
form and amount as provided by the Judgment.
The opinion stresses the importance of the Judgment for diplomatic law, and the major part
of it is devoted to the question of the practical solution by diplomatic means of the dispute
between the Parties. Once the legal issues have been clarified by the Judgment, the parties
should take speedy action and make maximum efforts to dispel tension and mistrust, and in
this a third-party initiative may be important. Judge Lachs visualizes a particular role for the
Secretary-General of the United Nations in this respect and the work of a special
commission or mediating body. In view of the gravity of the situation, the need for a
resolution is urgent.
*
**
In his dissenting opinion, Judge Morozov indicates that operative paragraph 1 of the
Judgment is drafted in such a way that it is not limited to the question of the violation of the
Vienna Conventions of 1961 and 1963, but also covers, if read with some paragraphs of the
reasoning, the question of alleged violations of the 1955 Treaty of Amity, Economic
Relations and Consular Rights between Iran and the United States; this treaty, he believes,
does not provide the parties with an unconditional right to invoke the compulsory jurisdiction
of the Court, and in the circumstances the Court has in fact no competence to consider the
alleged violations.
Furthermore, Judge Morozov observes, the United States committed during the period of
the judicial deliberations many unlawful actions, culminating in the military invasion of the
territory of the Islamic Republic of Iran, and has therefore lost the legal right to refer to the
Treaty in its relations with Iran.
Judge Morozov voted against operative paragraphs 2, 5 and 6 because he had noted that a
series of actions was undertaken by the United States of America against Iran in the course
of the judicial deliberations, in particular the freezing by the United States of very
considerable Iranian assets, combined with the intention, clearly expressed in a statement
made by the President of the United States on 7 April 1980 to make use of these assets, if
need be, in accordance with decisions that would betaken in the domestic framework of the
United States; that meant that the United States was acting as a "judge" in its own cause. In
Judge Morozov's view, the situation, created by actions of the United States, in which the
Court carried on its judicial deliberations in the case had no precedent in the whole history
of the administration of international justice either before the Court or before any other
international judicial institution. The United States, having caused severe damage to Iran,
had lost the legal as well as the moral right to reparations from Iran, as mentioned in
operative paragraphs 2, 5 and 6.
Judge Morozov also finds that some paragraphs of the reasoning part of the Judgment
describe the circumstances of the case in an incorrect or one-sided way.
He considers that, without any prejudice to the exclusive competence of the Security
Council, the Court, from a purely legal point of view, could have drawn attention to the
undeniable fact that Article 51 of the United Nations Charter, establishing the right of selfdefence to which the United States of America referred in connection with the events of 2425 April, may be invoked only "if an armed attack occurs against a member of the United
Nations", and that there is no evidence of any armed attack having occurred against the
United States.
Judge Morozov also stresses that some indication should have been included in the
Judgment to the effect that the Court considered that settlement of the dispute between the
United States and the Islamic Republic of Iran should be reached exclusively by peaceful
means.
*
**
Judge Tarazi voted in favour of operative paragraphs 3 and 4 of the Judgment, because he
considered that the seizure of the embassy, and the detention as hostages of those present
in it, constituted an act in breach of the provisions of the 1961 and 1963 Vienna
Conventions on Diplomatic and Consular Relations.

On the other hand, Judge Tarazi felt impelled to vote against operative paragraph 1,
because he considered that only the 1961 and 1963 Vienna Conventions conferred
jurisdiction on the Court in the present case.
He also voted against paragraphs 2 and 5, because, in his view, the Court, at the present
stage of the proceedings and considering the concomitant circumstances, could not make
any ruling as to the responsibility of the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran.
On the other hand, Judge Tarazi voted in favour of paragraph 6, because he considered
that, in the event of any reparations being owed, they should be determined and assessed
by the International Court of Justice; it was not admissible for them to be the subject of
proceedings in courts of domestic jurisdiction.

Chinese Flour Importer Assn. v. Price Stabilization Board 89 Phil 439


G.R. No. L-4465

July 12, 1951

CHINESE FLOUR IMPORTERS ASSOCIATION, MANILA, PHILIPPINES, petitionerappellee,


vs.
PRICE STABILIZATION BOARD (PRISCO), respondent-appellants.
This is an appeal interposed by respondents as well as intervenors from a decision of the
Court of First Instance of Manila ordering the Price Stabilization Corporation (PRISCO) to
grant flour quota allocations to the members of the petitioner association and other qualified
importers pursuant to the provision of sections 12 and 14 of Republic Act No. 426 on the
basis of their quota allocations for the years 1948 and 1949, and dismissing the complaint
of the intervenors.
On September 5, 1950, the Chinese Flour Importers Association, Manila Philippines, filed in
the Court of First Instance of Manila a petition for mandamus to compel the Philippine Relief
and Trade Rehabilitation Administration (PRATRA) and the Philippine Wheat Flour Board to
issue in favor of petitioner's members the import quota allocations of wheat flour to which
they claim to be entitled under sections 12 and 14 of Republic Act No. 426, known as
Import Control Law, with a prayer that a writ of preliminary injunction be issued to restrain
that a writ of preliminary injunction be issued to restrain the PRATRA and the Wheat Flour
Board from granting flour allocations and imports licenses therefor to new importers in
excess of the latter's shares in the portion reserved for new importers by the provision of
Republic Act No. 246. After hearing, the writ was granted. In the meantime, Manuel S.
Rustia, Ernesto Y. Sibal, and other allowed to intervene. The parties having agreed to
submit the case on the pleadings and on their respective memoranda, because it involves
only a question of law, the trial court rendered judgment as stated in the early part of this
decision. From this judgment respondent and intervenors appealed. On November 16,
1950, petitioner filed motion for a writ of execution pending appeal from the judgment of the
trial court. The motion was granted over the objection of the respondent were allowed to file
a superseades bond. The case is now before us purely on question of law.
The background of this case is as follows: On March 23, 1949, the Republic of the
Philippines signed the International Wheat Agreement together with the governments of
forty-one (41) other countries, which was entered into for the purpose of assuring supplies
of wheat to importing countries and markets of wheat to exporting countries at equitable
and stable prices (Part 1, article 1). The agreement fixes the quantities of wheat
representing the guaranteed sales of an exporting country to the importing countries and
the guaranteed purchases of an importing country from the exporting countries, and
specifies the prices for such sales and purchases (arts. III and VI). The guaranteed
purchases of the Philippines as an importing country, is 196,000 metric tons, of wheat every
crop year during the period of the agreement which expires on July 31, 1953, (Annex A to

art. III). The Agreement also provides that the exporting and importing countries shall be
free to fulfill their guaranteed quantities through private channels or otherwise (art. III).
By a resolution approved on February 17, 1950, the Senate of the Philippines concurred in
the Agreement by the President "with the understanding that nothing contained in this
Agreement shall be construed as in any way curtailing or abridging the right, authority and
discretion of the Philippine Government to distribute and allocate among the private
importers the Philippines the guaranteed purchases of the Philippine Government." This
Agreement respect to the Philippines on February 27, 1950.
On March 17, 1950, the President issued Executive Order No. 305 regulating the
importation of wheat flour into the Philippines by way of implementation of the International
Wheat Agreement and authorizing the PRATRA to control its importation and distribution.
The Order provides that from March 17, 1950, no flour should be imported into the
Philippines without any import license duly issued by the PRATRA which shall be signed by
its General Manager by authority of the President . It also provides that the 196,000 metric
tons, of wheat which the Philippine Government has guaranteed to purchase yearly under
the International Wheat Agreement, shall be imported in the name of the Republic of the
Philippines and that the said quantity of wheat shall in turn be allocated to local consumers,
dealers and/or importers of flour who may be authorized by the General Manager of the
PRATRA pursuant to the rules and regulations to be promulgated by the Philippine Wheat
Flour Board created in said order. On the same date, the Philippine Flour Board issued
circular No. 1, containing the required rules and regulations, and since said date, the
PRATRA began allocating the importation of wheat flour into the Philippines under the
Agreement of Executive Order No. 305. On May 19, 1950, Republic Act No. 426 was
approved. This Act provides for the allocation of import commodities to old and new
importers, and lays down the pattern to be followed with respect to the amount of quota
allocations. It provides that 70 per cent, 60 percent and 50 per cent of the total import quota
for the fiscal years 1950-51, 1951-52, and 1952-53 respectively shall be allocated to old
importers (section 14). It designates the Import Control Commissioner as the various
importers, with the exception of wheat flour for the allocation of which the PRATRA was
given exclusive power and authority.
On October 3. 1950, Executive Order No. 35O was issued by the President creating the
Price Stabilization Corporation, known as PRISCO, and dissolving the PRATRA effective as
of that date. In view thereof, the PRISCO was substituted for PRATRA as party in this case.
Appellee is an association of fifty-nine (59) licensed Chinese importers of flour which was
organized under the laws of the Philippines and was registered in the Securities and
Exchange Commission. Its members individually imported wheat flour in 1946, 1947 and
1948, and as such are old importers within the meaning of section I of Republic Act-No.
426, They are duly licensed to do business in the Philippines and have individually filed with
the PRATRA the prescribed applications for wheat flour import quota allocations and for
licenses to import their quota into the Philippines. They made representations and demands
upon the PRATRA and the Philippine Wheat Flour Board in order that they may be given
import quota allocations of wheat flour in the amount which should correspond to them in
accordance with section 14 of Republic Act No. 426, but their demands were disregarded
and their representation ignored. They made the same representations and demand upon
the Prisco, but with the same result. Considering this attitude of the PRATRA to be
discriminatory, unfair and oppressive, appellee filed the present action.
Stripped of unnecessary verbiage, the basic issue involved in this case may be boiled down
as follows: Shall the PRATRA, now PRISCO, make the allocation of import quota on wheat
flour in accordance with the provisions of Republic Act No. 426, as claimed by the appellee,
or shall it make such allocation in accordance with sections 1 and 2 of Executive Order No.
305 in conjunction with section 15 of Republic Act No. 426, as claimed by the appellants?
Let us discuss both theories.
Appellant's theory is "that the importation and allocation of wheat flour must be governed by
sections 1 and 2 of Executive Order No. 305, in conjunction with the section 15 of Republic
Act No. 426." They allege that the allocation of wheat flour is not subject to the provisions of
Republic Act No. 426; that wheat flour being considered as class by itself, Republic Act No.
426 does not apply to this particular commodity; and that in so far as wheat flour is
concerned, the PRATRA, now PRISCO, has the exclusive power to use its discretion in the
allocation of wheat flour, which discretion is not subject to judicial control.
On the other hand, it is appellee's theory (1) that being old importers of wheat flour,
appellee's members are entitled as matter of right to quota allocations in the amount which
should be determined in accordance with section 14 of Republic Act No. 426; (2) that as the
agency designated by section 15 of said Act and charged with the function of determining
and regulating the allocation of wheat flour among importers, it is the duty of the of the
PRATRA, now PRISCO, to allocate this commodity in accordance with section 14; (3)that in
denying neglecting, and refusing to give import quota allocations to appellee's members in
the amount indicated in section 14, the PRATRA, now PRISCO, has unlawfully neglected
the performance of an act which is especially enjoined upon it by section 14, and as thereby
excluded appellee's members from the use and enjoyment of their rightful shares in the
wheat flour quota under section 14; and (4) that appellee's remedy is mandamus.

The theory of appellants "that the importation and allocation of wheat flour must be
governed by sections 1 and 2 of executive Order No. 305, in conjunction with section 15 of
Republic Act No. 426", is mainly based upon the provisions of section 15 and appendix "C"
of Republic Act No. 426. It is therefore important to examine and analyze these provisions.

Quota allocations of any importer for any particular article including wheat flour, shall not be
transferable.

the Act, we likewise find more tenable the line of reasoning of the appellee on the matter.
Said proviso, in our opinion, can only refer to the clause immediately preceding it in section
15 and can have no other meaning than that the function of allocating the wheat flour
instead of being assigned to the Import Control Commissioner was assigned to the
PRATRA which heretofore has been charged with said duty by Executive Order No. 305. It
simply means that the authority to determine and grant flour quota allocations was taken
from the Import Control Commissioner and given to the PRATRA, now PRISCO, which
must have been done presumably because of the practice and experience heretofore
enjoyed by said office in so far as the allocation of wheat flour import quota is concerned
under the provisions of Executive Order No. 305, which was issued to implement and carry
out the objective of the International Wheat Flour Agreement. If the intention of the law is to
exempt said wheat flour from the provisions of Republic Act No. 426, the proper place of
said proviso would be in section 22, which contains the repealing clause, and not in section
15. Indeed, if the intention of the law is to except Executive Order No. 305 from the
operation of Act No. 426, that exception would have been clearly stated in said section 22.

It shall be illegal to cede, transfer, sell, rent lease, or donate, his or its import quota
allocation or license either directly or indirectly by the use of any simulation, strategy or
scheme under the provision of this Act, and any violation thereof shall be punishable with
the forfeiture by the Commissioner of the import quota or license of the erring party without
prejudice to his subjection to the penal provision of this Act.

The proviso is to be construed with reference to the immediately preceding parts of the
clause, to which it is attached. Lewis' Sutherland, Statutory Construction, sections 352, 420;
Friedlman vs. Sullivan, 48 Ark. 213, 2 S. W. 785; United States vs. Babbit, 1 Black 55, 17 L.
Ed. 94; McRae vs. Holcomb, 46 Ark. (306), 310; Towson vs. Denson, 74 Ark. 302, 306, 86
S. W. 661. (Hackney vs. Southwest Hotels, 195 S. W. 2d. 55, 58.)

Appendix "C" likewise provides in part:

The term "provided", is frequently regarded as used, not as qualifying the operation of the
statue, but as conjunctive to an independent paragraph. Provisos have therefore frequently
been held to bring in new matter rather than to limit or explain that which has gone before.
(50 Am. Jur., sec. 436.)

Section 15 of said Act provides:


Any existing law, executive or regulation to the contrary notwithstanding, no Government,
office, agency, or instrumentality, except the Import Control Commissioner, shall allocate the
import quota among the various importers: Provided, That the Philippine Rehabilitation and
Trade Rehabilitation Administration shall have exclusive power and authority to determine
and regulate the allocation of wheat flour, among importers.

(Controlled Non-essential Imports)


Flour, all kinds, except wheat flour.
It is contended that, under the above quoted provisions, wheat flour has been removed
from the scope and operation of Republic Act No. 426 and placed under Executive Order
No. 305 and the rules and regulations promulgated thereunder by the Wheat Flour Board
because, while on one hand, section 15 of said Act declares that no government office,
agency or instrumentality, except the Import Control Commissioner, shall allocate the import
quota among the various imports, on the other hand, the same section declares in its
proviso that PRATRA shall have exclusive power and authority to determine and regulate
the allocation of wheat flour among importers, and while Appendix "C' of Republic Act No.
426 contains a list of all controlled non essential imports, however in the group of flour of all
kinds listed therein wheat flour is excepted or excluded therefrom. The said proviso and
exclusion, appellant claim, confirm their view that wheat flour has been excluded from the
operation of Republic Act No. 426.
This argument is met by appellee in this wise: In arguing that because wheat flour is
excluded in Appendix "C" this commodity is deemed removed from the scope and operation
of Republic Act No. 426, appellants have completely misunderstood the purpose of the
appendices. These appendices were made part of the Act merely to establish a range of
percentage reductions on items listed therein which shall guide the Import Control Board in
fixing the import route of said items in accordance with section 7 where express reference
is made to the appendices. If wheat flour was expected from Appendix "C", it is because the
amount of wheat flour which may be imported into the Philippine and its price are already
fixed and determined in the International Wheat Agreement. There is, therefore, no need for
fixing the import quota of wheat flour.
We agree with this line of reasoning of counsel for the appellee. The only purpose of the
appendices is to itemize the commodities which are deemed controlled, the import quota of
which need to be fixed by the Import Control Board in accordance with section 7 of the law
for the purpose of allocating them to the importers. They do not necessarily indicate that
those excluded therefrom are not subject to the operation of said Act, because they also
come under the provisions of section 9 which have reference to the items of import not
enumerated in the appendices. In this connection, we also notice, as pointed out by counsel
for the appellee, that, aside from wheat flour, there are other commodities that are excepted
from Appendix "C", among which may be mentioned: Oats and infant foods, umbrella
fabrics, salmon and sardines, corned beef, hams and shoulders, master records, yarn and
threads, industrial starch and table cutlery. Other articles are similarly excepted in appendix
"D". Certainly, appellants can not seriously contend that these articles are not within the
purview of Republic Act No. 426 by the mere fact that, like wheat flour, they are excepted in
appendices "C" and "D". To our mind, their importation is governed by section 9 we have
already adverted to, which has reference to items of import not enumerated in the
appendices. This section provides that no such items of import shall be allowed an import
license and exchange cover in excess of its excess of its import value (C.I.F.) for the year
1948, except agricultural machineries, equipment and other machinery, and materials and
equipment for dollar-producing and dollar-saving industries, which means that as regards
those articles not mentioned in the appendices they can also be imported by those who had
imported them in 1948, subject only to the limitation that the import quota shall not exceed
their import value in 1948, and to the reservation in favor of new importers provided for in
section 14 of Republic Act No. 426.
As regards appellants' contention that the second part of section 15, which is preceded by
the word "provided" operates as an exception to exclude wheat flour from the provisions of

The natural and appropriate office of a proviso is to modify the operation of that part of the
statue immediately preceding the proviso, or to restrain or qualify the generality of the
language that it follows. Indeed, the presumption is that a proviso in a statue refers only to
the provision to which it is attached, and, immediately preceding clause or provision. (50
Am. Jur., sec. 438.)
The operation of a proviso is usually and properly confined to the clause or distinct portion
of the enactment which immediately precedes it, and does not extend to or qualify other
sections, unless the legislative intent that it shall so operate is clearly disclosed; and, a
fortiori, a proviso contained in an amendatory statue will not be extended to the original act.
(50 Am. Jur., sec. 640.)
Since the proviso in sec. 7205 applies only to that section, and not to sec. 7204, it follows
that there is no limitation of liability as to the value of property entrusted by the guest to the
hotel keeper under sec. 7204. (59 C. J. 1090).
To bolster up the contention that the proviso of section 15 of Act No. 426 has the effect of
excluding the importation of wheat flour from the operation of said Act, counsel for
appellants lay stress in the phraseology used by the law in that, while the first part provides
that the Import Control Commissioner shall allocate the import quota the proviso prescribes
that the PRATRA shall have power and authority to determine and regulate the allocation.
In other words, the first part uses the word "allocate" with respect to Import Control
Commissioner, whereas the proviso employs the phrase "to determine and regulate the
allocation" which, it is contended, is broader in scope and confers absolute discretion upon
the PRATRA to make the allocation without following the pattern set in section 14 of the
same Act.
The claim is based upon a misconception of the true import of the terms used in the law.
The reason why the first part of section 15 merely employs the word allocate when referring
to Import Control Commissioner is because the fixing of quota is a function that the law
gives to the Import Control Board (section 3) in accordance with the schedule and pattern
set in section 7 and 14 of Republic Act No. 426, so that once the quotas are fixed, the
allocation thereof becomes the concern of the Import Control Commissioner. The Import
Control Board is the policy-determining body that fixes and allocates the import quota,
whereas the Import Control Commissioner is the executive officer charged with the
execution of the policy and directives of the Board. Upon the other hand, the proviso gives
to the PRATRA exclusive power and authority to determine and regulate the allocation
because the intention is to give to that office the power and authority not only to allocate the
quota but also to pass on the financial capacity and other requisite qualifications of the
importers to whom the quota should be allocated. This is a function which the PRATRA has
been exercising before the approval of Republic Act No. 426 in the light of the rules and
regulations adopted by the Import Flour Board under the provisions of Executive Order No.
305, and the PRATRA has the machinery for determining and passing upon the fitness and
financial qualifications of the importers, and that machinery is the one contemplated in that
proviso. But in allocating the import quota of the importers once they have been screened
and determined, it is our opinion that the PRATRA should follow the pattern set in section
14 of Republic Act No. 426.
We wish to take note of the inference drawn by appellants from the use of the phrase
"including wheat flour" in the second paragraph of section 25 which prohibits the transfer of
quota allocations of any importer for any particular article pointing out that by the use of that

phrase, the legislator meant to exclude wheat flour from the other provisions of the Act,
specially the provisions of sections 12 and 14 relative to the quota allocations. The
argument is specious, for it fails to recognize that the intention of Congress, in inserting said
phrase is precisely to dispel the doubt that may be engendered by the proviso of the first
paragraph of section 15. The preceding paragraph excluded wheat flour from among the
imported commodities which the Import Control Commissioner is called upon to allocate,
and the insertion becomes necessary to avoid any inference that wheat flour is also
excepted from the second paragraph of the section. The insertion was made just to leave
no doubt that wheat flour comes within the purview of Republic Act No. 426.
Appellants may inquire, what are the provisions of Executive Order No. 305 which are the
inconsistent with Republic Act No. 426? The answer is simple. There are several that may
be mentioned, the most important of which are: on the matter of allocation, the Executive
Order provides that wheat flour shall be allocated to local consumers, dealers and/or
importers (sec. 2), whereas Act No. 426 provides that the wheat flour shall be allocated only
among importers within the meaning of said Act (sec. 15). While the Executive Orders does
not classify who are qualified importers, nor give any pattern for the allocation of quota, the
Act divides the importers into old and new importers, prescribes their qualifications
(sections 1 and 14), and establishes the basis to be followed in determining the amount of
quota allocations which may be given to them (sections 9, 12, 13 and 14). The Executive
Order creates a Board which is authorized to issue rules and regulations to be followed by
the PRATRA in the allocation of wheat flour (section 3), whereas the Act provides that the
determination and regulation of wheat flour among importers is a function that is exclusively
given to the PRATRA, which as a consequence it may exercise without necessarily being
bound by such rules and regulations (section 13). Needless to say that, as far as the issue
involved in this case is concerned, where the provisions of Executive Order are inconsistent
with or repugnant to the provisions of the Act, the mandate of the Act must prevail and must
be followed. In this connection, we note that section 5 of the Rules and regulations adopted
by the Wheat Flour Board to implement the provisions of Executive Order No. 305, provides
that 20 percent of wheat flour to be imported may be reserved for direct importation by the
PRATRA for stabilization purposes, and the 80 per cent shall be distributed first to direct
consumers who are financially able and who by themselves have been regularly importing
their flour requirements, then to qualified Filipino importers, and finally to other importers.
Because these provisions are repugnant to the pattern set for the allocation of quota in
section 14 of Republic Act No. 426, they must be deemed to have been impliedly repealed
by section 22 of the same Act. It follows that PRATRA can only make the allocation of
wheat flour now by observing the pattern set in said section 14.
We are urged to interpret the provisions of Act No. 426 in a way that may exclude wheat
flour from its operation in order to allow PRATRA to carry out its policy of placing the
importation of wheat flour exclusively in the hands of Filipino importers in line with the policy
of our Government to encourage and foster the spirit of nationalism among our people in
business, commerce and industry in the Philippines. We have informed, and have taken
notice of the claim, that the PRATRA recently in line with the above mentioned policy of
nationalism has determined to allocate the import quota of wheat flour exclusively among
the new importers, to the complete exclusion of the old importers, under the claim that it
has absolute discretion to do so subject only to the restrictions that may be imposed by the
Chief Executive.
We are not obvious of this policy of our Government which is indeed very plausible and
should be encouraged to give a break to our countrymen so that they may have greater
share in our local trade, business and commerce in line with the spirit of nationalism
underlying our Constitution, but plausible and patriotic though it may be, such policy should,
however, be adopted gradually so as not to cause injustice and discrimination to alien firms
or businessmen of long standing in the Philippines and who have been long engaged in the
particular trade thereby contributing with their money and efforts to the economic
development of our country. In fact, this is the policy that our Congress has set in an
unmistakable manner in Republic Act No. 426. This is also the policy that our President has
expressed in the letter he sent to the PRATRA relative to determination of the import quota
allocations of wheat flour.1 When the PRATRA decided to ignore entirely the rights of the
old importers, simply because they are aliens, in complete disregard of this policy of our
Government, these importers have the right to recur to the sanctuary of justice for redress,
for they too are entitled to certain rights under our Constitution.
Aliens within the state of their residence enjoy certain rights and privileges like those
enjoyed by its citizens, such as free access to the courts and the equal protection of the
laws. Nor may aliens be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law.
Citizens may, of course, be preferred to non-citizen without violating constitutional
guaranties. They are excluded from the enjoyment of political rights, such as the right to
vote and to hold public office. Other restrictions may be imposed for reasons of public policy
and in the exercise of the police power. (Padilla's Civil Code, pp. 95-96).
It is claimed that wheat flour as a commodity is a class by itself because it has been the
subject of an International Wheat Agreement and as such should be excepted from the
provisions of Republic Act No. 426. What is their special in wheat flour which should make it
a class by itself? This commodity is an import, as are other import items, and the
International Wheat Agreement is merely a trade agreement the objectives of which are to
assure supplies of wheat to importing countries and markets for wheat to exporting

countries at equitable and stable prices. The Agreement merely regulates the outflow and
inflow of flour between and among the countries signatories thereto. But the agreement
does not interfere with the internal laws of the signatory countries regarding imports and
exports, and as a matter of fact it provides in Article II that "Nothing in this Agreement shall
be construed to exempt any private trader from any laws or regulations to which he is
otherwise subject", and in the resolution approved by the Senate on February 17, 1950, the
Senate concurred in its acceptance by the President "with the understanding that nothing
contained in this Agreement shall be construed as in any way curtailing or abridging the
right, authority and discretion of the Philippine Government to distribute and allocate among
the private importers in the Philippines the guaranteed purchase of the Philippine
Government."
Wheat flour is, therefore, like any other commodity whose importation should be regulated,
and as such should be included within the Purview of Act No. 426. A perusal of this act will
show that it is all-comprehensive and covers the whole field of imports. It is the general and
basic law on imports intended to replace and substitute all prior laws, executive orders, and
rules and regulations on the same subject. Section 22 which provides that "Any Act or
executive order, rules or regulations whose provisions are contrary to, or in contravention
with any provision of this Act are hereby repealed", clearly reveals the intent of Congress to
establish a uniform system of rules on imports and to nullify the heretofore existing laws,
executive orders, and rules and regulations which may be inconsistent with the Act. No
reason is perceived, therefore, why wheat flour shall be regarded as a class by itself and
should be excluded from its operation simply because it has been the subject of an
international agreement.
To the foregoing consideration we may add that to interpret Republic Act No. 426 as
excluding wheat flour from its operation, as contended by appellants, would be tantamount
to an undue delegation of powers to the PRATRA and would render the Act unconstitutional
and void. As a general rule, the functions of legislation may not be delegated by the
legislative to the executive department or to any executive or administrative officer, board,
or commission, except as such delegation may be expressly authorized by a constitutional
provision. And a statute that vests an arbitrary discretion in administrative officers with
respect to an ordinary lawful business, profession or appliance, or fails to prescribe a
uniform rule of action or to lay down a guide or standard whereby the exercise of discretion
may be measured, is void and unconstitutional. We are not prepared to adopt such
interpretation.
As the general rule is stated in Corpus Juris, which statement has been cited and quoted
with the approval, the functions of legislation may not be delegated by the legislative to the
executive department or to any executive or administrative officer, board, or commission
except as such delegation may be expressly authorized by a constitutional provision, and
the constitution affords the measure of the powers which may be granted to purely
administrative boards or officers. Hence, where executive officers or bodies are charged
with the administration of statutes, the legislature must ordinarily prescribe a policy,
standard, or rule for their guidance and must not vest them with an arbitrary or uncontrolled
discretion with regard thereof or as to the matters or persons to which the statutes shall be
applied. So the legislature cannot vest in executive officers or bodies an uncontrolled power
to vary, change or suspend a statute unless the constitution so provides. (16 C. J. S. pp.
348-349.)
The practical question which arises in this problem is the determination of what is a proper
and reasonable discretion and what is an invalid arbitrary discretion. The general accepted
rule as to this question is to the effect that a statute or ordinance vests an arbitrary
discretion in administrative officers with respect to an ordinarily lawful business, profession,
or appliance, if it fails to prescribe a uniform rule of action or fails to lay down a guide or
standard whereby the exercise of discretion may be measured. Any law which authorizes
the issuing or withholding of licenses, permits or approvals or sanctions other administrative
functions in such a manner as the designated officials arbitrarily choose, without reference
to all the class to which the law under consideration was intended to apply and without
being controlled or guided by any definite rule or specified conditions to which all similarly
situated may conform, is unconstitutional and void. (11 Am. Jur., p. 947.)
Our attention has been invited to resolution No. 43, approved by the Senate of the
Philippines after this case has been decided by the lower court, in which it is reiterated that
the intent and policy of the Senate in inserting in the law the proviso under consideration is
to afford Filipino business enterprises more substantial participation in the vital wheat flour
import trade. Indeed, in that resolution, it is intimated that the proviso of section 15 of Act
No. 426 came into being as an amendment of the Senate with the considered object of
utilizing the PRATRA as the sole arbiter in fixing wheat flour allocations in consonance with
the national policy to advance the field of Filipino participation in the business enterprises in
the Philippines. But it is to be written into the law, and the resolution has been concurred in
by the House, and as such it does not have any binding effect in the determination of this
case. The resolution does not have the effect of law. The same cannot serve this Court from
its constitutional duty to interpret the law in accordance with well-known rules of statutory
construction.

While a court may not inquire into the intent of a legislator, it is bound to ascertain the
legislative intent from what was done by the legislature as an entity. (People vs.
Marxhauson, 171 N. W. p. 537.)
A legislative construction placed on a prior statute is without binding force in a judicial
proceeding and court is free to place its own construction on the prior statute. In re
Cauldwell's Estate, 36 N. Y. Swd 48, 178 Misc. 916. (4O Fifth Dec. Digest, p. 1527.)
A legislative declaration of opinion as to meaning of earlier statute, without a positive
legislative act, is not binding on the court in the construction of the earlier statute, since
statutory construction is a "judicial" not a "legislative function". State ex WashingtonOregon I vs. Co. Dobson, 130 P 2d 939, 169, Or. 546. (40 Fifth Dec. Digest, p. 1528.).
. . . under the general rule that a legislative resolution does not have
force or effect as a law, a legislative resolution as to the proper
construction of a statute is not binding on the courts. Boyer-Campbell
Co. vs. Fry, 271 Mich. 221, 260 N. W. 165, 98 ALR. 827 (50 Am. Jur. p.
331.)
The other point stressed by the appellants is that mandamus does not lie in this case
because the power vested in the PRISCO to determine and regulate the allocation of wheat
flour among importers requires exercise of discretion. They claim that it is elementary that
mandamus will not lie compel the performance of a discretionary duty, and in issuing the
writ, the trial court in effect has ordered the PRISCO not merely to act, but to act in a
particular manner, to wit: to give wheat flour allocations to Chinese importers. The
contention presupposes that the power and authority vested in the PRISCO to determine
and regulate the allocation of wheat flour among importers is to be governed exclusively by
the provisions of Executive Order No. 305. Under this theory, the claim is indeed well taken,
for there is no doubt that the aforesaid order gives to the PRISCO wide range of discretion
to allocate the import quota of wheat flour to the importers. But the assumption runs counter
to our theory that, while the PRISCO is given the power and authority to determine and
regulate the allocation of wheat flour, the allocation shall be made in accordance with the
pattern set in section 14 of Republic Act No. 426. Such being the case, the guaranteed
purchases of wheat flour must be allocated among old and new importers in accordance
with the mandatory provisions of section 14. And being old importers of wheat flour, the
members of the appellee are entitled as a matter of rights to quota allocations of this
commodity, hence their remedy is mandamus.
The claim that appellee has a plain, speedy and adequate remedy in the ordinary course of
law, other than the special civil action for mandamus, by a direct appeal to the President of
the Philippines, would be tenable if Executive Order No. 90, creating the PRATRA, now
PRISCO, contain a provision requiring such appeal before action could be taken in court
against the PRATRA in connection with the performance of its functions. But no such
appeal is therein provided, and the PRATRA, now PRISCO, being an agency created by
the President, it is presumed that its actions bear his official approval. Such appeal,
therefore, is deemed unnecessary. Neither can the acts of the PRATRA be considered as
acts of the President even if the import licenses to be issued by the PRATRA are to be
signed by authority of the President, because the PRATRA is a mere agency or
instrumentality of the executive branch of the Government whose functions can be looked
into by the Courts without infringing the principle of the separation of powers. .
In addition to the various federal boards and officers considered supra this section,
mandamus may lie, in a proper case, to compel action by other federal boards or officers.
Thus it has been held that a collector of customs may be compelled by mandamus to
perform purely ministerial duties; (55 C. J. S. p. 202).
Mandamus lies to compel the interstate commerce commission to perform a purely legal
duty, in the performance of which no act of judgment is involved; also to proceed and
decide a case according to its judgment and discretion, where it refuses to proceed at all on
the ground that it is without jurisdiction and where in fact the law requires it to do so. (55 C.
J. S. p. 202).
Mandamus lies to compel the commissioner of patent to perform ministerial duties; and it is
proper remedy where he acts beyond his authority and without warrant of law. (55 C. J. S.
p. 201).
The remaining question to be determined refers to the claim that the Chinese Flour
Importers Association is not the real party in interest in this case and, therefore, the petition
should be dismissed. It is true that the petition has been filed in the name of the
association, but it is likewise true that the association has filed the petition in behalf of its
members who are all old importers and are entitled to import quota allocations under the
law. This association dealt with the PRATRA directly, and vice versa, in so far as the subject
matter of litigation is concerned, and it is this association that filed the bond for the issuance
of the writ of preliminary injunction prayed for in the petition. In Gallego et al. vs. Kapisanan
Timbulan ng mga Manggagawa,* 46 Off. Gaz., 4245, it was held that a labor organization
has legal personality to file a complaint in representation of its members. By analogy, the
appellee has legal personality to represent its members in this case. This case can also be
considered as suit under section 12, Rule 3 of the Rules of Court.

Wherefore, the decision appealed from is affirmed, with costs against the appellants. The
writ of preliminary injunction issued by the lower court is hereby made final.
PP v. Chan Fook 42 Phil 230
G.R. No. L-16968 October 6, 1921
THE PEOPLE OF THE PHILIPPINE ISLANDS, plaintiff-appelle, vs. CHAN FOOK,
Defendant-Appellant.
Hartford Beaumont for appellant.
No appearance for appellee.
VILLAMOR, J.:
The appellant Chan Fook was prosecuted for the crime of resistance and disobedience to
the public authority, and sentenced by the Court of First Instance of Manila to two months
and one day of arresto mayor and to pay a fine or 1,301 pesetas and the costs of the
action, with subsidiary imprisonment in case of insolvency.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary
chanrobles virtual law library
From the record it appears that the accused, a Chinese subject, was a passenger of the
United States Military Transport South Bend, which arrived in Manila on April 6, 1920.
Having been allowed by the immigration authorities to land, he left the boat on the same
day, April 6. At about 3 or 4 o'clock in the afternoon of the following day, he went to pier no.
1 to get his baggage. After the search of the baggage in which postcards of an indecent
character were found, a customs agent, Eugenio M. Cruz, attempted to search the body of
the accused, to which the latter apparently objected. A dispute took place between the two,
which terminated in the secret agent seizing the Chinaman by the arm with intent to search
his body, after showing him his police badge. The accused resisted and struck the secret
agent on the stomach. The latter in turn struck him on the neck. Here the customs
inspector, Anastacio Jacinto, intervened, and explained to the accused that Cruz was a
customs secret service agent and had the right to search him in order to find whether he
had on his person any contraband. Then the appellant made no further resistance and
allowed himself to be searched.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary chanrobles virtual law library
Under such circumstances, has the accused committed the crime of resistance and
disobedience to the public authority as alleged in the information? To decide this question, it
is first necessary to determine whether the agent, Cruz, was authorized to search the
person of the accused.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary chanrobles virtual law library
The prosecution alleges that under section 1338 of the Administrative Code all persons
coming into the Philippine Islands from Foreign countries shall be liable to detention and
search by the customs authorities under such regulations as may be prescribed relative
thereto. The defense, however, contends that once the accused has arrived at the point of
his destination by being allowed to leave the boat and to land he was beyond the
jurisdiction of the customs authorities, and, therefore, not liable to search without judicial
warrant. Section 1338 of the Administrative Code provides:
SEC. 1338. Search of persons arriving from foreign countries. - All persons coming into the
Philippine Islands from foreign countries shall be liable to detention and search by the
customs authorities under such regulations as may be prescribed relative
thereto.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary chanrobles virtual law library
Female inspectors may be employed for the examination and search of persons of their
own sex.
Having in mind the aim of the law in authorizing the search of persons coming from foreign
countries, which is to avoid the clandestine introduction into the Philippine Islands of goods
subject to the payment of customs duties, or the importation of the articles prohibited by
law, or the entrance of persons who have no right to reside in these Islands, we are of the
opinion that after the customs authorities have permitted the accused to land in Manila, the
terminus of his voyage, he ceased to be a passenger within the meaning of said section
1338 of the Administrative Code.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary chanrobles virtual law library
The fact that the accused returned to pier No. 1 to get the baggage that he had left there
the day before does not subject him to the operation of said section. He could have gone
back there several weeks or months after his arrival, and in such case, if the contention of
the prosecution is sustained, all foreigners arriving in the Philippines would be in the highly
anomalous situation of being liable to detention of the right to be secured against
unreasonable searches guaranteed by section 3 of the Act of Congress of August 29, 1916,
known as Jones Law, which provides:
That the right to be secured against unreasonable searches and seizures shall not be
violated.

It is urged that the object of searching the person of the accused was to find whether he
had with him any contraband. It was too late to look for any contraband. He had already
been searched when he left the boat. The accused had reached his destination, spending
the night in the house where he had taken lodging. It is not, therefore, reasonable to believe
that when he returned to pier No. 1 the next day, he had about his body any contraband.
Thus
the
search
made
by
the
agent
Cruz
appears
to
be
unreasonable.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary chanrobles virtual law library
Commenting on the meaning and score of resistance and disobedience, as elements of the
crimes against public authority and its agents, Groizard, among other things, says:
A person in authority, his agent or a public officer who exceeds his power can not be said to
be in the exercise of the functions of his office. The law that defines and establishes his
powers does not protect him for anything that has not been provided
for.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary chanrobles virtual law library
The scope of the respective powers of public officers and their agents is fixed, If they go
beyond, it and they violate any recognized rights of the citizens, then the latter may resist
the invasion, specially when it is clear and manifest. The resistance must be coextensive
with the excess, and should not be greater than what is necessary to repel the
aggression.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary chanrobles virtual law library
The invasion of the prerrogatives or rights of another and the excess in the functions of an
office, are the sources that make for legitimate resistance, especially, in so far as it is
necessary for the defense of the persons or their rights in the manner provided for in article
8 of the Penal Code. (3 Groizard, pp. 456, et seq.)
In the case at bar the action of the accused in laying his hands on the agent Cruz is, in our
opinion, an adequate defense to repel the aggression of the latter, who had seized him by
the arm for the purpose of searching him. In accordance with the repeated decisions of the
supreme court of Spain, the gravity of a disobedience to an order of a person in public
authority is measured and graded by the circumstances surrounding the act, the motives
prompting it, and the real importance of the transgression rather than by the source of the
order disobeyed. And, taking into consideration the circumstances of the present case,
wherein the agent Cruz had exceeded his functions, and wherein the accused acted in
defense of the most highly esteemed of individual rights - the constitutional right to be
secured against unreasonable searches - we are of the opinion that there is no ground for
finding the accused guilty of the crime defined in article 252 of the Penal
Code.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary chanrobles virtual law library
The supreme court of Spain, in a decision rendered December 26, 1876, held that the act of
obstinately disregarding an order of an agent of the authority does not constitute the crime
of grave resistance and disobedience to an agent of the public authority where it appears
that upon being directed for the third time, the accused obeyed, though uttering unpleasant
words, for although the accused did not leave the premises on the first and second
requests, he, however, obeyed on the third, and did not render it necessary for the public
officer to make use of the means authorized by law to make himself respected. That the
accused had no intention to resist and disobey the agents of the authority, in the legal
sense of the word, is shows by the fact that by the mere explanation of the customs
inspector, Anastasio Jacinto, he finally allowed himself to be searched. Jacinto's words
were sufficient to make the Chinaman submit himself peacefully to the requirement of the
agent Cruz.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary chanrobles virtual law library
That foreigners in the Philippines are entitled to the benefits of the individual rights secured
by the Philippine Bill is undeniable. In the case of Kepner vs. U. S. (195 U. S., 100), the
Supreme Court said:
When Congress came to pass the Act of July 1, 1902, it enacted, almost in the language of
the President's instructions, the Bill of Rights of our Constitution. In view of the expressed
declarations of the President, followed by the action of Congress, both adopting, with little
alternation, the provisions of the Bill of Rights, there would seem to be no room for
argument that in this form it was intended to carry to the Philippine Islands those principles
of our government which the President declared to be established as rules of law for the
maintenance of individual freedom, at the same time expressing regret that the inhabitants
of the Islands had not therefore enjoyed their benefit.
And according to the principles underlying the Constitution, as extended to the Philippine
Islands by the President's instructions to the Commission and by the Philippine Bill,
foreigners are entitled to the protection of their life, liberty, and property. In the case of Yick
Wo vs. Hopkins (118 U. S., 356, 369), Justice Matthews says:
The Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution is not confined to the protection of citizens.
It says: "Nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or properly without due
process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the
laws." These provisions are universal in their application to all persons within the territorial
jurisdiction, without regard to any differences of race, of color, or of nationality; and the
equal protection of the laws is a pledge of the protection of equal laws.

In view of the foregoing, the judgment appealed from is reversed, and the accused must be,
and is hereby, acquitted with the costs de oficio. So ordered.chanroblesvirtualawlibrary
chanrobles virtual law library
Johnson, Araullo, Street and Avancea JJ., concur.
Kwong Sing v. City of Manila 41 Phil 103
Youmans Case, U.S. v. United Mexican State 1926
U.S. vs. Panama, 6 United Rep, Intl. Arb Awards 308
Texas Cattle Case, American Mexican Claims Com. 1948
Germany v. U.S. ICJ June 23, 2001, Las Grand Case
Buffalo Claim, Italy v. Venezuela, 10 UN Rep Intl. Arb Awards 234 (1908)
Borovsky v. Com of Immigration, 90 Phil 107
Li Sien Giap v. Director of Lands, 59 Phil 687
Radick v. Hutchins 95 US 210
U.S. v. Guatemala, Shufeldt Claim, 1930, 5 Hackworth, p 485 2 UN Rep
Arb Awards 1079
Sambiaggo Case, (Italy v. Venezuela) Venezuela Arbitration of 1903,, p
666\
Bolivar Railway Co v. Ralston, Venezuela Arb, of 1903 p 388
U.S. v. Great Britain, US GB Claims Arb 1920 (Nielsen Report)
Rosa Gelbtrunk Claim, US v. El Salvadsor, Arb Tribunal 1902
French Co. of Venezuela Railroad Case 10 UN Rep Intl Arb Awards 285
Kummerov Case 10 UN Rep Intl arb Award 361
Dix Case 9 UN Rep Intl Arb awards 119
Ambatielos Case Greece v. UK ICJ Rep 28, 952
Estonia v. Lithuania PCIJ
Rhodore Forest Claim 3 UN Rep Intl Arb award 1406
Finnish Shipowners Claim 3 UN Rep Intl Arb awards 1484
Robert E. Brown Case 6 UN Rep Intl Arb awards 120
Debenture Holders of San Marco Co 1931, 5 UN Rep Arb awards 191
Panevetzus Saldutiskis Railway PCIJ ser. A/B no. 76 At. 16 (1939)
Mavrommatic Palestine Concessions PCIJ ser A. No. 2 at 12 (1924)