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The Power and Purpose of International LawInsights from the Theory and Practice of Enforcement$
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Mary Ellen O'Connell

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195368949

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195368949.001.0001

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International Court Enforcement

International Court Enforcement

(p.295) Chapter 8 International Court Enforcement
The Power and Purpose of International Law

Mary Ellen O'Connell

Oxford University Press

Law enforcement in national legal systems is subject to court supervision. That is increasingly the case in the international legal system with the proliferation of courts and tribunals. This is a welcome development though it brings with it the need for more sophisticated process theory — as to the interrelation of courts. In addition to supervising enforcement, some international courts have scope to enforce their decisions; all have the inherent authority to enforce interim orders. In the case of the International Court of Justice, the Security Council was given specific authority to aid in enforcement, but that is far from the only means. Indeed, when Americans were ordered to be released from unlawful detention in Iran in 1980, many states in the world employed economic sanctions to aid in the enforcement of that order.

Keywords:   international courts and tribunals, judgments, process theory, interim orders, inherent authority

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