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Diplomatic Protection in EU Law: What’s New under the Sun?

In: The Hague Journal of Diplomacy
Author:
Federico Forni Modena Italy fedeforni@libero.it

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Summary

This article aims to assess which subjects could offer diplomatic protection in third countries to European citizens and/or European Union legal persons on the basis of eu law. The absence of a common standard of assistance and the lack of specific agreements with third states has de facto excluded the diplomatic protection ex Article 23 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (tfeu, formerly the tec or Treaty establishing the European Community). Yet the practice shows cases in which the European Commission claimed the infringement of the rights of eu citizens and eu corporations in cases of violation of an international agreement concluded by the Union, or in cases of a breach of general international law in a matter of eu exclusive competence. These evidences indicate that the eu could play an effective role in ensuring the protection of European citizens in third countries in situations in which the eu member states have transferred their competences to the European Union. However, these actions remain discretional, since the ‘duty to protect’ is far from achieved both in eu and in international law.

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