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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 Inviolability of Diplomatic Agents in the Context of Employment

The Inviolability of Diplomatic Agents in the Context of Employment

(p.113) 8 The Inviolability of Diplomatic Agents in the Context of Employment
Diplomatic Law in a New Millennium

Lisa Rodgers

Oxford University Press

‘Ordinary’ employment contracts—including those of domestic servants—have been deemed to attract diplomatic immunity because they fall within the scope of diplomatic functions. This chapter highlights the potential for conflict between these forms of immunity and the rights of the employees, and reflects on cases in which personal servants of diplomatic agents have challenged both the existence of immunity and the scope of its application. The chapter examines claims that the exercise of diplomatic immunity might violate the right to a fair trial under Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights and the way in which courts have dealt with these issues. The chapter analyses diplomats’ own employment claims and notes that they are usually blocked by the assertion of immunity, but also reflects on more recent developments in which claims had been considered which were incidental to diplomatic employment (eg Nigeria v Ogbonna [2012]).

Keywords:   diplomatic immunity, employment contracts, employment law, right to a fair trial, domestic work, jus cogens, state immunity, ratione materiae

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