European Court of Human Rights: Foreign State Officials are Immune from Civil Suit for Torture (Jones v. United Kingdom)

The European Court of Human Rights has issued its long-awaited judgment in Jones v. United Kingdom. The case involves four British nationals who sued Saudi Arabia and Saudi officials in British courts for acts of torture which allegedly took place in Saudi Arabia. The European Court holds (6-1) that the civil suit was properly barred because a “grant of immunity to [Saudi Arabia and] the State officials in the present case reflected generally recognized rules of public international law.” The decision is available here. Stay tuned for Just Security’s coverage of the decision including a post by Shaheed Fatima. 

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About the Author(s)

Ryan Goodman

Co-Editor-in-Chief of Just Security, Anne and Joel Ehrenkranz Professor of Law at New York University School of Law, former Special Counsel to the General Counsel of the Department of Defense (2015-2016). Follow him on Twitter (@rgoodlaw).