Vanderbilt Journal of Transnational Law

First Page



The U.S. Supreme Court decided in Samantar v. Yousuf that claims of immunity by individual foreign officials in U.S. courts will be determined not under the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act but instead under the common law, drawing on principles of international law. The 2004 UN Convention on the Jurisdictional Immunities of States and Their Properties represents the most recent and comprehensive international thinking on the question of jurisdictional immunities of foreign states and their officials in foreign courts. Under the Convention, individual representatives of a state acting in that capacity are entitled to the same immunities as the state itself. This Article examines the relevant provisions of the Convention and related decisional law.