International Law

Choose one of the following questions:

1. Does international law strike an appropriate balance between immunity (both
diplomatic immunity and foreign state immunity) and the interests of justice?

2. “In the modern world, the rules on state responsibility, now codified by the
International Law Commission, are too strict in many respects. For example, when
considering attribution, the “effective control” test should be abandoned in favour of
the “overall control” test. Similarly, the rules on when a state has standing to invoke
another state’s responsibility are too narrow.”
Do you agree?

3. In a 2014 article, Alex Mills argues that the concept of state jurisdiction in
international law needs to be rethought, to
“reflect the more complex realities of an international legal order under which
states possess both jurisdictional rights and obligations and are no longer the
exclusive actors.”
Do you agree? Does the concept of state jurisdiction in international law need to be

4. “International dispute settlement is a matter of policy and not law”.
Do you agree?



Essay Instructions – LAWS6243

These instructions supersede anything in the course outline, so please read them
carefully. If you fail to adhere to them you may be penalised.
1. On the front page of your essay please put your SID (not your name).
2. The title of the essay should be the essay question itself.
3. Structure
As well as the usual introduction, body of essay and conclusion, please include:
• the essay title
• a table of contents – this need not list page numbers or be hyperlinked – I just
need to see what headings and subheadings have been used
• a bibliography, and
• please add page numbers

4. Word length:
a. Maximum length is 5,000 words
• Penalty for exceeding this is 3 marks for every 100 words or part thereof
above 5,000
b. The word count:
• includes all footnotes and headings
• excludes the cover page (if any), title, table of contents and bibliography
c. The minimum length is 4,500 words.

5. Content:
As explained in class, what we look for in any essay are two things: (1) evidence that
you understand the law, and the issues involved and (2) your own opinion or analysis
of the law or the issues. What you must avoid is writing an essay that is largely
descriptive of the law; all that tests is your ability to copy from a textbook.

6. References – plagiarism
As a general rule, you should insert a footnote with a reference in it for everything
you say, unless it is your own opinion:
o This means you might need to include a footnote for every sentence
o The golden rule is that for every sentence you write, the reader knows:

Is this your own opinion, or
Is it someone else’s opinion or work, in which case whose and where
can it be found?

7. References – pinpoint

a. You must not refer to any source unless you include in your footnote the
exact page, or paragraph, you are relying on – this is called “pinpoint
• I will deduct one mark for every reference that should, but does not,
include a pinpoint citation
b. You must include full citations, in accordance with AGLC4, in your bibliography
• You need not include full citations in your footnotes, but you must still clearly
identify the exact work AND PAGE OR PARAGRAPH you are citing, eg
“Evans, 5th edition, p.566” – be sure to include the edition
“Nicaragua, Merits, para. 225” – there were two Nicaragua decisions
“UNGA resolution 1973 (2011)” etc.

c. The reason why we include references in our written work is to direct the reader
to the exact source of the statement we are making, or the source of our
• So a reference which does not include the actual page or paragraph number
of the source being relied on is completely useless to the reader

8. References – general
a. You must refer to English-language sources only – no referring to literature
published in a foreign language, even if you provide a translation
b. Do NOT cite sources you find on the internet – search the library databases for
peer-reviewed journals and books written by highly-qualified authors
• If you do find sources outside those databases, you should cite the source
properly, not just the URL where you found the source
c. You must not cite any source unless you have read it
• I may ask you to produce your sources, and reserve the right to deduct marks
if it is clear that sources have been cited without having been read.