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Diplomatic Law in a New Millennium$
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Paul Behrens

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198795940

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198795940.001.0001

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The Privileges and Immunities of the Family of the Diplomatic Agent

The Privileges and Immunities of the Family of the Diplomatic Agent

The Current Scope of Article 37(1)

(p.98) 7 The Privileges and Immunities of the Family of the Diplomatic Agent
Diplomatic Law in a New Millennium

Simonetta Stirling-Zanda

Oxford University Press

The focal point of this chapter is Article 37(1) of the VCDR which grants, under certain conditions, immunities to family members of diplomats. Significant questions in this regard remain unresolved—not least the concept of the ‘diplomatic family’ itself. State practice shows that a certain discretion has been exercised against a backdrop of existing and evolving customary law. The result has been a generally balanced approach. Nevertheless, obiter dicta and calls for exceptions to the rules are beginning to appear with increasing frequency; concerns are expressed regarding the consequences of immunities for other treaties and for fundamental human rights. This chapter provides a comparative survey of the interpretation of Article 37(1), but also reflects on the codification history and on lessons drawn from the preparatory work.

Keywords:   preparatory works, ordre public—private international law, relationship between domestic and international law, reciprocity, polygamy, same-sex partner, gainful occupation, nationality

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