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By J. Craig Barker
1. The most recent decision is reported at [1999] 2 WLR 825. The House of Lords set aside its first decision of 25 November 1998 ([1998] 3 WLR 1011) on the ground that the Committee had not been properly constituted on that occasion due to the links between Lord Hoffmann, one of the Lords in that case, and the human rights group Amnesty International which had been allowed to intervene in the case. (see [1999] 2 WLR 272) Never before has the House of Lords set aside one of its decisions in this way. All three judgments of the House of Lords are available at the House of Lords home page at http://www.parliament.

2. See the speech of Lord Browne-Wilkinson, [1999] 2 WLR 825, 840.

3. It is interesting to note that the first successful attempt to prosecute such an individual in the United Kingdom occurred only in March 1999.

4. See s.16(4) of the State Immunity Act 1978.

5. [1999] 1 WLR 825, 855-863.

6. [1999] 1 WLR 825, 903-904 (italics added).

7. [1999] 1 WLR 825, 847.

8. One of the most serious consequences has been the ongoing decision by the Chilean airline LanChile to cease commercial flights to the Falkland Islands, which has had serious economic repercussions for that British territory.


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