The 2009 Resolution of the Institute of International Law on Immunity and International Crimes
AbstractAt its Naples session of September 2009, the Institute of International Law adopted a resolution on immunity and international crimes. The Institute has adopted several other resolutions on the rule of immunity, but this is the first time it has addressed this very important topic. Indeed, there is a need to clarify existing law applicable to the immunity of states and their agents for the alleged commission of international crimes. The Resolution clarifies a central aspect of the issue, namely that there cannot be any immunity for agents acting in official capacity in cases concerning international crimes, provided that they are not covered by personal immunity afforded to high-level officials and diplomats while they are in office. While the clarification of this particular point is an essential contribution to the contemporary debate on the question, the Resolution nevertheless fell short in deciding whether the immunity of the state itself in cases of serious human rights violations can be upheld by national courts.