18 février 2016

OUVRAGE : H.P. Aust, G. Nolte (eds.), The Interpretation of International Law by Domestic Courts: Uniformity, Diversity, Convergence

Catherine MAIA

The Interpretation of International Law by Domestic Courts assesses the growing role of domestic courts in the interpretation of international law. It asks whether and if so to what extent domestic courts make use of the international rules of interpretation set forth in the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties. Given the expectation that rules of international law are to have a uniform interpretation and application throughout the world, the practice of domestic courts is considerably more diverse. The contributions to this book analyse three key questions. First, whether international law requires a coherent interpretive approach by domestic courts. Second, whether a common or convergent methodological outlook can be found in domestic court practice. Third, whether a common interpretive approach is desirable from a normative perspective.

The book identfies a considerable tension between international law's ambition for universal and uniform application and a plurality of different approaches. This tension between unity and diversity is analysed by a group of leading international lawyers from a wide range of geographical, disciplinary and methodological approaches. Drawing on domestic practice of number of jurisdictions including, among others, Colombia, France, Japan, India, Israel, Mexico, South Africa, the United Kingdom and the United States, the book puts the interpretative practice of domestic courts in a wider context. Its chapters offer doctrinal, practical as well as theoretical perspectives on a central question for international law.

1. Georg Nolte: Introduction
Part I. Foundations and Doctrinal Aspects
2. Michael Waibel: Principles of Treaty Interpretation - Developed for and Applied by National Courts
3. André Nollkaemper: Grounds for the Application of International Rules of Interpretation in National Courts
4. Eirik Bjorge: 'Contractual' and 'Statutory' Treaty Interpretation in Domestic Courts? Convergence around the Vienna Rules
5. Antonios Tzanakopoulos: Judicial Dialogue as A Means of Interpretation
6. Mathias Forteau: The Role of the International Rules of Interpretation for the Determination of Direct Effect of International Agreements
7. Peter Staubach: The Interpretation of Unwritten International Law by Domestic Judges
Part II. The Practice of Domestic Courts in Context
8. Dire Tladi: Interpretation of Treaties in an International Law-Friendly Framework: the Case of South Africa
9. Alejandro Rodiles: The Law and Politics of the Pro Persona Principle in Latin America
10. Christian Djeffal: Dynamic and Evolutive Interpretation of the ECHR by Domestic Courts? An Inquiry into the Judicial Architecture of Europe
11. Julian Arato: Deference to the Executive: The US Debate in Global Perspective
12. Yukiko Takashiba: Gingerly Walking on the VCLT Frontier? Reflections from a Survey on the Interpretive Approach of the Japanese Courts to Treaties
13. Vik Kanwar: Treaty Interpretation in Indian Courts - Adherence, Coherence, and Convergence
Part III. Unity, Diversity, Convergence: Theoretical Perspectives
14. Theresa Reinold: Diffusion Theories and the Interpretive Approaches of Domestic Courts
15. Achilles Skordas: Treaty Interpretation and Global Governance: The Role of Domestic Courts
16. Olga Frishman and Eyal Benvenisti: National Courts and Interpretive Approaches to International Law: The Case Against Convergence
17. Helmut Philipp Aust: Between Universal Aspiration and Local Application: Concluding Observations

Helmut Philipp AUST, Georg NOLTE (eds.), The Interpretation of International Law by Domestic Courts: Uniformity, Diversity, Convergence, Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2015 (400 pp.)

Helmut Philipp Aust, Senior Research Fellow, Humboldt University Berlin
Georg Nolte, Professor of Law, Humboldt University Berlin; Member of the UN International Law Commission

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