An International Administrative Procedural Law of Fair Trial: Reality or Rhetoric?

In: Max Planck Yearbook of United Nations Law Online
Rishi Gulati
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Highlighting that the right to a fair trial in international law now forms an aspect of international administrative procedural law, I argue when international administrative tribunals administer justice to international civil servants, fair trial guarantees must be accorded. Particularly, in this paper I assess the two leading international administrative tribunals, the United Nations Dispute Tribunal and the Administrative Tribunal of the International Labour Organisation, in terms of their compliance with fair trial standards. Focusing on the jurisprudence of the International Court of Justice, I first show how what I call an international procedural law of fair trial has been developed and requires that basic due process guarantees must be accorded wen delivering international administrative justice. I then develop fair trial standards with greater nuance, especially focusing on the quality of independence and impartiality. Then, the paper engages in a detailed analysis of the leading international administrative tribunals in terms of compliance with fair trial standards, concluding that significant deficits exist. If a fair trial for international civil servants is to be guaranteed, significant structural reforms are necessary.

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