International Court of Justice

Ahmadou Sadio Diallo (Republic of Guinea v. Democratic Republic of the Congo). Preliminary Objections: The Unfinished Story of Diplomatic Protection

The judgment of the International Court of Justice on preliminary exceptions in the Diallo case shows that the venerable institution of diplomatic protection (and by ricochet the Court that implements it), while conserving its original shape and outline, has incontrovertibly evolved to reflect the structural changes affecting international society. The paper first analyses change within continuity. It also shows that this change is however limited: in the field of protection foreign investment, the Court is reiterating the solutions it came up with in 1970 in Barcelona Traction, thus ensuring continuity without change.