Title: The extraterritorial scope of human rights law with specific reference to the application of the duty to investigate under Article 2 of the European Convention on Human Rights during the armed conflict in Iraq 2003

Authors: Zaneta Sedilekova

Addresses: School of Law, University of Glasgow, Stair Building, 5-9 The Square, Glasgow G12 8QQ, Scotland, UK

Abstract: This article addresses the increasing necessity to establish the extent of states' human rights obligations in extraterritorial armed conflicts. The substantial discussion focuses on two recent judgments of the European Court of Human Rights - Hassan v. UK and Jaloud v. Netherlands. Since the reasoning of the European Court in these cases suggests that various human rights obligations will be affected to a different extent by the occurrence of extraterritorial hostilities, Section 3 of this article focuses on the standards of the duty to investigate violations of the right to life and concludes that there are certain aspects of this duty that manifestly conflict with its counterpart under International Humanitarian Law. Two methods of modifying the strict standards of the duty to investigate are therefore proposed, namely the focus on the effects (or the absence thereof) of the challenged shortcomings and on concrete constraints substantiated by factual evidence as well as provisions of the International Humanitarian Law.

Keywords: duty to investigate; human rights law; extraterritoriality; ECHR extraterritorial application; European Convention on Human Rights; right to life; Hassan v. UK; Jaloud v. Netherlands; human rights obligations; extraterritorial armed conflicts; Iraq war; International Humanitarian Law.

DOI: 10.1504/IJHRCS.2015.074937

International Journal of Human Rights and Constitutional Studies, 2015 Vol.3 No.4, pp.362 - 383

Received: 26 Oct 2015
Accepted: 27 Oct 2015

Published online: 24 Feb 2016 *

Full-text access for editors Access for subscribers Purchase this article Comment on this article