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Jus Cogens, Obligations Erga Omnes and Other Rules - the Identification of Fundamental Norms

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Chapter Summary

The new debate on exceptions to State immunity, both before criminal courts and in civil law suits, as well as the efforts of several States to expand universal jurisdiction are consequences of the preceding development and the further elaboration on the concept of jus cogens and erga omnes obligations. The concept of jus cogens is founded on community interests and characterized by the prohibition against disposing over certain rights, be it to one's own disadvantage or to the detriment of others who are not in a position to provide for their protection themselves. Crimes under international law which are subject to universal jurisdiction are a category of their own. Just as jus cogens and erga omnes norms, they are defined by their legal consequences. Peremptory norms, obligations erga omnes and universal criminal law often are identified inductively, by referring to concrete, intuitively convincing candidate rules of primary law.

Keywords: civil law; jus cogens; obligations erga omnes; peremptory norms; State immunity; universal criminal law



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