The Belgian Stance On Immunity From Jurisdiction For International Organisations

This Article was kindly offered by Philippe BILLIET to the Brussels Diplomatic Academy (BDA) and to Diplomatic World (DW).  

Palace of Justice - Brussels, Belgium

Brussels, 7th July 2022 - Brussels, being an international hub in diplomacy, hosts numerous international organisations. These international organisations tend to have a Seat Agreement with the Belgian hosting State that offers them immunity from jurisdiction before Belgian Courts.

It is settled doctrine and case law, both in Belgium and internationally, that international organisations that enjoy immunity from jurisdiction cannot, a priori, be sued before the courts of a state.

Belgian Courts, however, tend to apply particular conditions to grant jurisdictional immunities, that may go beyond what is required from a Human Rights perspective.

This article will explain the Belgian stance on the immunity from jurisdiction for International Organisations.

Philippe BILLIET - Billiet & Co - Avenue Louise 146 - 1050 Brussels - Belgium

Tel.: +32 2 643 33 01 - Fax: +32 2 646 24 31 -