Hostname: page-component-848d4c4894-8kt4b Total loading time: 0 Render date: 2024-06-20T22:41:06.078Z Has data issue: false hasContentIssue false

Legal Protection Against the UN-Security Council Between European and International Law: A Kafkaesque Situation?

Report on the fall conference of the graduate program “Multi-level constitutionalism (Verfassung jenseits des Staates)” in Berlin, 8 December 2006

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  06 March 2019


Core share and HTML view are not available for this content. However, as you have access to this content, a full PDF is available via the ‘Save PDF’ action button.

Constitutionalism beyond the state concerns itself with the relation among various legal levels and the position of the individual in a multilevel legal system. The question how human rights are protected against international organizations who increasingly take on executive powers cannot be thoroughly answered without confronting a fundamental debate in international law theory: the constitutionalism-fragmentation debate. The European Court of First Instance as well as the European Court of Justice (ECJ) had to deal recently and are still dealing with this complex in a number of cases.

Copyright © 2007 by German Law Journal GbR 


1 Information on this program is available at: Scholar

2 Kadelbach / Kleinlein even speak of three debates, Stefan Kadelbach / Thomas Kleinlein, Überstaatliches Verfassungsrecht, 44 Archiv des Völkerrechts 235, 236 (2006). Von Bogdandy emphasizes that this debate comes in as many variants as there are scholars: von Bogdandy, Constitutionalism in International Law: Comment on a proposal from Germany, 47 Harvard International Law Journal, 223 (2006).Google Scholar

3 Bryde, Brun-Otto, Konstitutionalisierung des Völkerrechts und Internationalisierung des Verfassungsrechts, 42 Der Staat 61 (2003); Fassbender, Bardo, The UN charter as Constitution of the international community, 36 Columbia Journal of Transnational Law 529 (1998); Shelton, Dinah, Normative Hierarchy in International Law, 100 American Journal of International Law 291 (2006); Tomuschat, Christian, Die internationale Gemeinschaft, 33 Archiv des Völkerrechts 1 (1995); Wet, Erika de, The International Constitutional Order, 55 International and Comparative Law Quarterly 51 (2006).Google Scholar

4 Habermas, Jürgen, Die postnationale Konstellation, in 91 Die postnationale Konstellation – Politische Essays, (1998); Habermas, Jürgen, Hat die Konstitutionalisierung des Völkerrechts noch eine Chance?, in 113 Der gespaltene Westen (2004).Google Scholar

5 Held, David, Democracy And the Global Order – From the Modern State to Cosmopolitan Governance, (1995).Google Scholar

6 Tomuschat, Christian, International Law: Ensuring the Survival of Mankind on the Eve of a New Century, General Course on Public International Law, 281 Recueil des Cours 10 (1999); for a comprehensive résumé see Armin von Bogdandy, Constitutionalism in International Law: Comment on a Proposal from Germany, 47 Harvard International Law Journal 223 (2006).Google Scholar

7 Ravi Afonso Pereira.Google Scholar

8 Elaine Mak.Google Scholar

9 Osvaldo Alejandro Saldias Collao.Google Scholar

10 Thiel, Thorsten, (27 February 2007).Google Scholar

11 Court of First Instance, Yusuf and Al Barakaat International Foundation v. Council and Commission, Judgment of 21 September 2005, Case T-306/01 (Yusuf).Google Scholar

12 Court of First Instance, Yassin Abdullah Kadi v. Council of the European Union and Commission of the European Communities, Judgment of 21 September 2005, Case T-315/01 (Kadi).Google Scholar

13 Court of First Instance, Hassan v. Council and Commission, Judgment of 12 July 2006, Case T-49/04 (Hassan).Google Scholar

14 Court of First Instance, Chafiq Ayadi v. Council, Judgment of 12 July 2006, Case T-253/02 (Ayadi).Google Scholar

15 SC Res. 1267 of 15 October 1999, no.4 incited to “freeze funds and other financial resources, including funds derived or generated from property owned or controlled directly or indirectly by the Taliban, or by any undertaking owned or controlled by the Taliban, as designated by the Committee established…,” available at: These measures were expanded by SC Res. 1333 of 19 December 2000, No.8, available at: (3 March 2007).Google Scholar

16 Annan, Kofi, Speech on International Human Rights Day, 8 December 2006, at the Time Warner Center, available at: (8 January 2007).Google Scholar

17 SC Res. 1526 of 30 January 2004, p.4, No. 18.Google Scholar

18 This connection between human rights and the effectiveness of international police measures is also put forward by Hörmann, Saskia, Völkerrecht bricht Rechtsgemeinschaft? 44 Archiv des Völkerrechts 267, 324 (2006).Google Scholar

19 Affirmed in SC Res. 1730 of 19 December 2006, p. 1, available at: (9 January 2007).Google Scholar

20 See Report of the Security Council Committee established pursuant to resolution 1267 (1999) concerning Al-Quaida and the Taliban and associated individuals and entities of 17 January 2006, S/2006/22, 8; Fourth Report of the Analytical Support and Sanctions Monitoring Team appointed pursuant to Security Council Resolutions 1526 (2004) and 1617 (2005) Concerning Al-Quaida and the Taliban and associated Individuals of 10 March 2006, S/2006/154, 10.Google Scholar

21 It is also not discussed in Kofi Annan's report on UN reform, see In larger freedom: towards development, security and human rights for all, A/59/2005 of 21 March 2005, available at (27 February 2007).Google Scholar

22 Christian Walter argues, in line with a jurisdiction of the European Court of Human Rights concerning power-transfer to private persons, that the European Convention of Human Rights contains the obligation of member states to “export” human rights protection into international organizations they are joining: they are not allowed to absolve themselves of their human right protection standards by transferring interventionist powers to international organizations, Walter, Christian, Grundrechtsschutz gegen Hoheitsakte internationaler Organisationen, 129 Archiv des öffentlichen Rechts (AöR) 39, 54 (2004).Google Scholar

23 See, Arnauld, Andreas von, UN-Sanktionen und gemeinschaftsrechtlicher Grundrechtsschutz”,44 Archiv des Völkerrechts 201, 212 (2006); similarly Saskia Hörmann, supra note 19, 314.Google Scholar

24 Expression from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 10 December 1948, Art. 5.Google Scholar

25 Koskenniemi, Martti, International Law and Hegemony: A Reconfiguration, 17 Cambridge Review of International Affairs, no. 197, 202 (2004); Kleinlein / Kadelbach also argued that the peace-keeping function of the indifference of classical international law with its principle of equality of all states might be lost within the process of constitutionalization, see supra note 3, 248.Google Scholar

26 2 BvL 52/71, BVerfGE 37, 271 (Solange I); 2 BvR 197/83, BVerfGE 73, 339 (Solange II).Google Scholar

27 Yusuf (note 12), para. 226, 283.Google Scholar

28 A position shared by Markus Kotzur, Eine Bewährungsprobe für die Europäische Grundrechtsgemeinschaft / Zur Entscheidung des EuG in der Rs. Yusuf u.a. gegen Rat, EuGRZ 2005, S. 592, in: Europäische Grundrechte-Zeitschrift (EuGRZ) 19, 24 (2006).Google Scholar

29 This concept corresponds with the Maastricht decision of the German Federal Constitutional Court (BVerfGE 89, 155), decidedly drafted by Paul Kirchhof, who was then judge at the Court. In this conception, the EC does not qualify as a federal state but something less – a “Staatenverbund”. The main line of legitimacy of European legal action still follows from the democratically elected national governments, the most important actors on the European level. Constitutionally speaking, the authority of the European Union stems from the national constitutions and the powers they delegated to the European legislative. Therefore, national constitutional law keeps the guard on what enters the national legal system.Google Scholar

30 More concerned with human rights issues, Saskia Hörmann came to a similar conclusion, supra note 18, 267.Google Scholar

31 Case C-84/95, Bosphorus Hava Yollari Turizm ve Ticaret AS v. Minister for Transport, Energy and Communications and others, 30 July 1996, European Court of Justice.Google Scholar

32 See on this point von Arnauld, UN-Sanktionen und gemeinschaftsrechtlicher Grundrechtsschutz, 44 Archiv des Völkerrechts, 201, 202 (2006).Google Scholar

33 Kotzur, Markus, supra note 28, 21.Google Scholar

34 Court of First Instance, Organisation des Modjahedines du peuple d'Iran v. Council of the European Union, Judgment of 12 December 2006, Case T-228/02.Google Scholar

35 SC Res. 1373 of 28 September 2001, European Common Position 2001/930/CFSP and 2001/931/CFSP.Google Scholar

36 Kadi, Case T-315/01, No. 197, 200, 218.Google Scholar

37 See likewise Christoph Möllers, Das EuG konstitutionalisiert die Vereinten Nationen, 3 Europarecht (EuR) 426 (2006) and Payandeh, Mehrdad, Rechtskontrolle des UN-Sicherheitsrats durch staatliche und überstaatliche Gerichte, 66 Zeitschrift für ausländisches öffentliches Recht und Völkerrecht (ZaöRV) 41, 54 (2006).Google Scholar

38 Opinion of Advocate General Mengozzi, delivered on 26 October 2006, Case C-354/04 P (Segi).Google Scholar