Aldo Schiavello, Massimo Starita

M.N. and Others v. Belgium: Some Dissenting Observations

  • Abstract

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Keywords: humanitarian visas; interpretation of human rights treaties; M.N. v. Belgium; extraterri-torial jurisdiction; asylum; embassies

In this commentary to the M.N. v. Belgium case, the authors criticize the three fundamental argu-ments on which the decision of the European Court of Human Rights is founded: the approach based on ‘originalism’, the approach based on the Courts’ precedents, and the approach based on consequentialism. As far as consequentialism is concerned, the authors approve the use of non-strictly legal arguments in the Court’s reasoning, convinced as they are that human rights courts, more than any other judge, are not la bouche de la loi, but hold political power. We criticize the Court's choice to give space to only one of the (possible) political consequences of its decision, completely disregarding all the others, regardless of their importance for human rights.

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