The Right of Actio Popularis before International Courts and Tribunals


Actio Popularis before International Courts and Tribunals examines actio popularis in the context of the symbiotic relationship between procedural and substantive normativity in international law. Actio popularis is an important procedural tool devised to address the challenges posed by the relativization of substantive normativity and recognition of norms established to protect collective interests in international law. Farid Ahmadov’s analysis underlines the ineffectiveness of bipolar litigation in enforcement of collective obligations in international law and the importance of introducing new procedural mechanisms to address the challenges posed by the transition from bilateralist to multilateralist normativity. The volume highlights the subtle link between interpretation of standing rules and the ways in which judicial policy concerns inform decisions of international courts and tribunals on admissibility of actio popularis.

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Farid Ahmadov, D.Phil., University of Oxford, is a Research Fellow at ADA University, Baku, Azerbaijan.
Table of Cases
List of Abbreviations

1 Identifying the Elements and Operational Framework of actio popularis
 1 Elements of actio popularis in Roman Law and Municipal Legal Systems
 2 Defining the Operational Context for actio popularis in International Law
 3 Actio popularis as a Judicial Concept: Proliferation of International Courts and Tribunals – a Bar to a Unified Conception of actio popularis in International Law

2Understanding the Elements of actio popularis
 1 Classification of Obligations in International Law: Bilateralist vs Multilateralist Conceptions of International Norms
 2 Towards Identification of Collective Interests
 3 Absolute Obligations: Nature of Human Rights Obligations

3Enforcing Community Obligation
 1 Responsibility for Violation of Collective Obligations: Debates Within the International Law Commission
 2 Invoking Responsibility to Protect Collective Interest: Distinguishing between Injured and Non-injured States
 3 Injury and Damage as a Precondition to Invoke Responsibility: A Bar to Invoke Responsibility to Protect Collective Interests (A Bar to actio popularis)

4Judicial Enforcement of Community Obligations
 1 Ineffectiveness of “Bipolar” Litigation in Protection of Collective Interests
 2 Injury/Damage (Legal Interest/Interest) as a Condition to Bring a Claim before International Courts and Tribunals

5Actio popularis before the ICJ
 1 Deconstructing a “Legal Dispute”
 2 Actio popularis: Can ICJ Decide for other International Courts and Tribunals?
 3 Sources of actio popularis: Express and Inferred Right to actio popularis
  3.1 Actio popularis by Inference under International Treaty Instruments: Establishing a Link between Interpretation of Jurisdictional Clauses and Substantive Norms in Applications Brought before the ICJ
  3.2 ICJ:The Right of actio popularis by Virtue of Express Treaty Provisions
  3.3 The Right of actio popularis under Optional Clause Declarations: Adjusting Procedural Law to Substantive Obligations
  3.4 Procedural Bar to Judicial Enforcement of Collective Obligations before International Court of Justice: actio popularis and Indispensable Third Party Rule: Insignificance of Erga Omnes (Collective) Nature of Obligations

6Actio popularis before Other International Courts and Tribunals
  1.1 Actio popularis in Cases of Protection of the Area
 2.1Conception of Causes of Action: Cautious Approach to Relaxing the Direct and Individual Interest Test
  3  EC t HR
  4.1 Determining the Nature of WTO Obligations and Their Legal Consequences: The Problem of a Legal Interest

7Actio popularis as a Question of Judicial Policy
 1 Actio popularis as a Result of Judicial Law Making
 2 The Problem of Non Liquet and Limits of Judicial Law Making
 3 Actio popularis and Judicial Policy Concerns

All interested in public international law, international dispute settlement and law in general.
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