International Law: Recent Work
US Treasury delists Sheikh Yassin Abdullah Kadi after 13 years
The US Treasury Department has removed Mr Kadi’s name from its list of “specially designated nationals”. This development marks the conclusion of Mr Kadi’s challenges to the restrictive measures and comes after a thirteen year battle which started with the imposition of sanctions upon Mr Kadi in October 2001.
Mr Kadi had already been de-listed in 2012 by the United Nations Security Council and the European Union, and in 2008 by the United Kingdom.
Following this decision, Mr Kadi is free from all targeted sanctions anywhere in the world.
US civil claim against Yousef Jameel dismissed
By a ruling of the US Supreme Court, claims brought against Yousef Jameel have finally been dismissed. Mr Jameel had been named as one of hundreds of defendants in a legal action brought on behalf of families of victims of the 2001 attack on New York. At the time the claims were made, the case received publicity in the UK media. Yousef Jameel, a successful businessman and renowned philanthropist, is a long-standing client of Carter-Ruck.
The successful US legal team was headed by Viet Dinh and Kenneth Caruso, assisted by consultant Andrew Stephenson in London.
Carter-Ruck’s International Law practice commended in 2015 Chambers and Legal 500 Directories
Carter-Ruck has been commended as a Leading Firm for its Public International Law practice by both of the leading legal directories.
The 2015 Chambers Directory commends the firm for its sanctions work and involvement in highly sensitive cases. Legal 500 describes Carter-Ruck as "excellent for public international law", referring to partners Cameron Doley and Guy Martin along with Solicitor Lawrence Northmore-Ball.
Al Jazeera Notice of Dispute served on State of Egypt
Al Jazeera has served a formal Notice of Dispute on Egypt pursuant to the 1999 Qatar-Egypt Bilateral Investment Treaty, asserting that Egypt is in breach of its Treaty obligations and international law generally and claiming compensation in a sum in excess of US$150million. If the dispute is not resolved within 6 months, the matter will be referred to international arbitration under the rules of the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes.
The Guardian, Reuters, FT, Press Gazette
Guy Martin quoted in Wall Street Journal.
Carter-Ruck supports British Institute of International and Comparative Law Annual Grotius Lecture
Guy Martin addresses distinguished Grotius Dinner audience
Along with Shell, Carter-Ruck supported BIICL’s prestigious Annual Grotius Lecture and Dinner, held at the Law Society on 4 February 2014.
This year’s Lecture was presented by Sir Christopher Greenwood CMG QC. Sir Christopher has been a Judge on the International Court of Justice since 2009 and is a Vice-President of BIICL.
Guy Martin, the firm’s Head of International Law, spoke at the dinner about his experiences of representing clients in sanctions cases before the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg.
Report finds “clear evidence” of torture and execution of prisoners by the Syrian regime
An inquiry team mandated by Carter-Ruck to look into the credibility of photographs and other evidence relating to the torture and murder of prisoners by the Syrian regime has concluded that "there is clear evidence, capable of being believed by a tribunal of fact in a court of law, of systematic torture and killing of detained persons by the agents of the Syrian government".
International Islamic Relief Organization: Philippines and Indonesia branches de-listed by UN Al Qaida Sanctions Committee
On 6 January 2014 the Saudi-based global charity International Islamic Relief Organization (IIRO) successfully achieved de-listing of its Philippines and Indonesia branch offices by the UN Al Qaida Sanctions Committee. The Committee confirmed it has removed these branch offices, which were originally listed in 2006, from the UN Al Qaida Sanctions List. Following the de-listing of the branch offices, IIRO is no longer subject to any UN sanctions.
The de-listing of these IIRO branch offices by the Committee followed a recommendation by the UN Ombudsperson, Judge Kimberly Prost. Carter-Ruck had submitted a de-listing petition on IIRO’s behalf to Judge Prost in December 2012. None of the member states represented on the Committee appears to have objected to the de-listing.
IIRO has always denied that it, or any of its branch offices, has ever supported in any manner, and whether directly or indirectly, Al Qaida or any terrorist group.
Tests show Arafat likely to have been poisoned
The investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, on which Carter-Ruck’s international law team has been working for the past 18 months, has taken a dramatic turn with the revelation that Swiss scientists who tested his remains discovered levels of radioactive polonium-210 which pointed strongly to his having been the victim of deliberate poisoning. The news received very widespread coverage across the world’s media, with Al Jazeera and The Guardian taking the lead.
Read Al Jazeera's coverage hereRead The Guardian's articles here and hereRead the BBC's article hereRead The Telegraph's article here
The story has also been covered by the FT, The Huffington Post, the Daily Mail, The NY Times, 20 Minutes, Libération and EL PAÍS.
Protecting The Messenger
Cameron Doley spoke about the international law implications of Egypt's crackdown on independent media entities at the recent "Protecting The Messenger" seminar in London. Other speakers included representatives of the UNHCR, UNESCO, the International Committee of the Red Cross, the BBC, CNN and other major media organisations.
The Guardian’s Giles Fraser comments on Kafkaesque treatment of Carter-Ruck client Sheikh Yassin Abdullah Kadi who was formerly the subject of targeted sanctions by the UN Al-Qaida Sanctions Committee
Click here for the article.
Carter-Ruck supports ‘Smarter EU Sanctions’ workshop held at University College London, 8 November 2013
Sheikh Yassin Abdullah Kadi and Guy Martin of Carter-Ruck address distinguished audience about effect of targeted sanctions
Carter-Ruck supported a workshop on EU sanctions held at University College, London on 8 November 2013.
Guy Martin, the firm’s Head of International Law, with his client Sheikh Yassin Abdullah Kadi, gave introductory addresses to the distinguished audience outlining the impact of EU Sanctions from the perspective of a formerly designated person.
The workshop brought together judges, EU and national officials, decision and policy makers, practising lawyers as well as leading academics, and other stakeholders. It was organised by Professor Piet Eeckhout of UCL, and Maya Lester of Brick Court Chambers.
The workshop addressed issues arising from the EU’s sanctions policies, notably the extensive and often successful litigation which has resulted (such as the Kadi I and II cases), and questions as to the protection of fundamental rights. Speakers and attendees at the conference included several representatives of sanctioned individuals and entities as well as leading academics, and senior representatives from the UN, the European Commission, and the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
The Keynote speech, on the Kadi II case and the review of sanctions cases by the Court of Justice of the European Union was given by Judge Koen Lenaerts, Vice President of the Court of Justice of the European Union. The speech was chaired by Alan Dashwood of City University, and the commentator was Judge Kimberly Prost (UN Ombudsperson for the 1267 Sanctions Committee).
US Court has no jurisdiction to hear challenge to the Kafala system
A number of major companies and prominent individuals based in the Gulf have successfully defended a multi-million dollar claim brought by a US national arising in part out of the Kafala system to which he was subject while working in the Middle East. The Kafala system, which is used widely across the Gulf, has been the subject of much coverage recently in the Western media and involves the control and monitoring of foreign workers. The Plaintiff sought damages in excess of US$10 million but his claim was struck out for lack of jurisdiction on grounds that the Defendants had no association with the US state in which it was brought.
Al Jazeera calls in Carter-Ruck over Egypt attacks
Long-standing Carter-Ruck client Al Jazeera has instructed the firm to take action in relation to the campaign mounted against its journalists over the course of the past two months by Egypt’s military government.
Yassin Kadi wins second ECJ case as Court rejects appeals by EU Commission and UK government
Saudi businessman and philanthropist Sheikh Yassin Abdullah Kadi has won his second case before the European Court of Justice: the Court has dismissed appeals by the United Kingdom and the EU authorities and upheld the General Court’s judgment in Mr Kadi’s favour.
Carter-Ruck wins further EU sanctions challenge in the Luxembourg General Court
Carter-Ruck has successfully obtained an order from the General Court of the European Union in Luxembourg annulling EU targeted sanctions. On this occasion the asset freezing sanctions had been imposed on a prominent individual as a part of a raft of EU sanctions applicable to a North African State following the civil uprisings of the Arab Spring.
The Court held that the material relied on by the Council of the European Union in imposing the sanctions -including diplomatic cables disclosed by Wikileaks - failed to provide any legitimate basis for the listing of Carter-Ruck’s client.
The Council of the EU was supported in the litigation by the European Commission which had intervened in the litigation. In addition to ordering annulment of the asset freezing measures, the Court has ordered the Council to pay its own legal costs as well as those of Carter-Ruck’s client.
The Court rejected arguments that the Council was entitled to impose the freezing measures because of the listed person’s family relations; and the Court followed a separate case successfully brought by Carter-Ruck, Tay Za v Council of the EU, which established the principle that the EU institutions are not entitled to presume guilt by association solely because of an individual’s family relationships.
EU court just on Iran
Guy Martin, Carter-Ruck's Head of International Law, has co written a letter to the Sunday Times in response to a recent article in the Sunday Times criticising the stance of the Court of Justice of the European Union on targeted sanctions.
Click here to see the response
Sheikh Yassin Abdullah Kadi is de-listed by the UN Al Qaeda Sanctions Committee
On 5 October 2012 the Saudi businessman and philanthropist Sheikh Yassin Abdullah Kadi, successfully achieved delisting by the UN’s Al Qaeda Sanctions Committee after an eleven year battle which started with the imposition of sanctions upon him in October 2001.
Carter-Ruck submitted a de-listing request on Mr Kadi’s behalf to the UN Ombudsperson Judge Kimberly Prost in November 2011, and following her recommendation the Al Qaeda Sanctions Committee delisted Mr Kadi on 5 October 2012.
In 2001 Mr Kadi was nominated by the US for inclusion in the UN’s Al Qaeda sanctions regime. Mr Kadi has always denied that he has ever supported in any manner and whether directly or indirectly Al Qaeda or any terrorist group. Yet the system of targeted sanctions against him afforded none of the usual protections, such as right of access to an independent court or tribunal or the right to know the evidence against him, which apply to those who are the subject of criminal proceedings.
Carter-Ruck’s International Law department, led by partner Guy Martin, has been coordinating Mr Kadi’s challenges to sanctions on a worldwide basis ever since sanctions were first imposed against him in October 2001. As a result of Mr Kadi’s successful appeal to the ECJ in Luxembourg in 2008, pressure was brought to bear on the UN to improve its processes to allow individuals the subject of sanctions to petition the UN directly for delisting. The Office of the Ombudsperson was established by the Security Council in 2009 to provide for the independent review of de-listing requests relating to the Al-Qaeda Sanction List. Judge Prost was appointed to that position in June 2010.
Carter-Ruck Challenges EU Syria Sanctions
As the EU continues to target more individuals and entities under its Syrian sanctions regime, an increasing number of applications are being brought in the EU Courts to challenge the alleged basis for those measures. Carter-Ruck has been acting in a number of such cases since the Syrian uprising began, adding to its burgeoning practice in this area.
Yasser Arafat: Suspicion of Polonium 210 Poisoning - Complaint Filed
Carter-Ruck has been retained by Mrs Suha Arafat, the wife of the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, to coordinate efforts worldwide concerning the suspicious circumstances surrounding her husband’s death.
Mrs Arafat is represented by Cameron Doley and Luke Staiano.
Click here for a copy of Carter-Ruck's press release
Click here to read the Telegraph's coverage of the case
Carter-Ruck sponsors ‘Smart Sanctions and the Rule of Law’ Conference at New York University School of Law, June 2012
Presentation by Guy Martin of Carter-Ruck on ‘Lawyering for the targets of Sanctions’
The Centre for Human Rights and Global Justice at New York University School of Law held a conference on targeted sanctions in New York from 21 to 23 June 2012. Guy Martin, the firm’s Head of International Law, addressed the conference on the subject of litigating sanctions cases, on a panel of speakers chaired by former UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office Legal Adviser, Sir Daniel Bethlehem.
The conference brought together leading academic and legal experts to exchange views, experiences and opinions on the subject of targeted sanctions. Speakers and attendees at the conference included several representatives of the subjects of sanctions, as well as senior representatives from the UN, the Council of the European Union, and the US Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control.
Harold Koh, Legal Adviser to the US Department of State, gave the keynote speech. Other speakers included Judge Kimberly Prost, UN Ombudsperson, David Anderson QC, the UK’s independent reviewer of terrorism legislation, and of Brick Court Chambers, and Richard Barrett, Coordinator of the UN Al-Qaida Sanctions Monitoring Team. Also in attendance were a former Advocate General of the European Court of Justice as well as leading academics from Europe and the USA.
Expansion of Public International Law and Commercial Litigation Teams
Carter-Ruck is delighted to announce the addition of three solicitors to its Public International Law and Commercial Litigation teams.
Miranda Rushton and Omar Naqib have joined the Public International Law team headed by partners Cameron Doley and Guy Martin. The firm also welcomes Zoe Brocket to further strengthen the firm's burgeoning commercial litigation practice.
Miranda has a LLM (Distinction) in Public International Law and qualified as a solicitor in 2003. She has worked at the British Institute of Comparative and International Law, the International Institute of Humanitarian Law and latterly at the Appeals Chamber of the UN International Criminal Tribunal (Yugoslavia) in the Hague. Miranda is currently advising on EU and UN sanctions related issues and also matters with an International law or diplomatic dimension.
Omar completed his training with Clyde & Co in 2009 and then continued to specialise in International Dispute Resolution. He has represented foreign governments and commercial bodies and is experienced in dealing with the risk and impact of EU and UN economic and political sanctions.
Omar is currently involved in applications to annul targeted sanctions, travel bans and asset-freezing measures.
Zoe read law at Warwick University and trained at DLA Piper and qualified in 2011 into the firm's litigation and regulatory group. She has a strong commercial litigation background for both domestic and international clients. Zoe works primarily in the firm's commercial litigation practice advising on breach of contract, professional negligence and financial misselling as well as media litigation including libel and privacy
Full profiles are available under Lawyers.
Burmese national Pye Phyo Tay Za wins his appeal
The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has annulled EU restrictive measures freezing Pye Phyo Tay Za's assets and orders the Council to pay his legal costs.
Court of Justice of the European Union Press ReleaseClick here for The Straits Times' article on the case
European Union removes John Bredenkamp from Zimbabwe sanctions list
The Council of the European Union has removed the businessman John Bredenkamp and his companies from its list of individuals and entities subject to restrictive measures in respect of Zimbabwe.
Mr Bredenkamp has brought proceedings before the General Court of the European Union in Luxembourg challenging the restrictive measures, in addition to a claim for judicial review in the High Court, London, over decisions taken by the UK Government in relation to his listing.
ECJ Advocate-General delivers landmark opinion in Pye Phyo Tay Za Appeal
In late 2011 Advocate-General Mengozzi of the European Court of Justice delivered a landmark opinion in Pye Phyo Tay Za’s appeal to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) in Luxembourg, recommending that the Court should set aside the earlier judgment of the General Court in Luxembourg and annul the contested freezing regulation insofar as it relates to Mr Tay Za.
Click here for further information
Ofcom Vindication for Al Jazeera
The UK broadcasting regulator Ofcom has ruled in favour of the news channel Al Jazeera English following a complaint about its series on the 'Palestine Papers', the largest leak of confidential documents in the history of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Ofcom dismissed every element of the complaint brought by Dr Saeb Erakat on behalf of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO).
Sheikh Yassin Abdullah Kadi: European court orders annulment of asset freezing regulation
The General Court of the European Union in Luxembourg has today delivered a landmark decision annulling a European Regulation freezing the assets of Mr Kadi.
The 3 judges of the General Court (Seventh Chamber) today ruled that the contested freezing regulation must be annulled insofar as it relates to Mr Kadi.
In ordering the annulment of the regulation the General Court ruled that the regulation
- was adopted in breach of Mr Kadi’s rights of defence and
- in breach of Mr Kadi’s rights to effective judicial review and
- constitutes an unjustified restriction of Mr Kadi’s right to property.
9/11-related US civil claims against prominent Saudi businessman dismissed
Sheikh Yassin Abdullah Kadi has succeeded in having dismissed in their entirety the civil claims brought against him in the United States on behalf of the families of the 9/11 victims.
District Judge Daniels so ordered on 13 September 2010 in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.
Mr Kadi is among numerous individuals, companies and governments in the Muslim world named as defendants in multiple civil proceedings brought in the US District Courts by the families of those killed in the 9/11 attacks. It had been alleged that the named defendants were associated with Al-Qaeda and were therefore responsible, directly or indirectly, for the events of 9/11. The proceedings have been generally referred to as the “three billion dollar claim”, reflecting the sum that the Plaintiffs’ attorneys seek in damages.
However, the Court ruled that the claim against Mr Kadi must be dismissed on the ground that the allegations made in the complaint were insufficient to state a claim that was even plausible on its face. The Court further ruled that it lacked any personal jurisdiction over Mr Kadi.
Mr Kadi’s successful defence of the civil proceedings in the US District Courts was conducted by David Geneson (of Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP, Washington DC) instructed by the Carter-Ruck team comprising Guy Martin and Cameron Doley.
Annual Conference of the British Institute of International and Comparative Law ('BIICL') on 11 June 2010: ''Energy, Security and its Impacts on the International Legal System''
Carter-Ruck co-sponsored BIICL's annual conference on 11 June 2010, together with Shell International B.V.
A programme of panel sessions on topics ranging from protecting energy investments in a changing legal regime, private law issues surrounding cross border energy supply and the human rights of indigenous peoples, took place throughout the day.
Following a keynote speech by Professor Julia King, Vice-Chancellor of Aston University and member of the UK Committee on Climate Change, speakers representing a range of international organisations held panel sessions led by representatives of Cambridge University, Shell International, the international chamber of commerce, the Permanent Court of Arbitration and BIICL.
Click here to see the full programme.
Islamic Relief Worldwide
The firm has been retained by the highly-respected international charity Islamic Relief Worldwide on a range of matters. Foreign Secretary David Milliband recently described Islamic Relief as a shining example of an organisation that positively combines "the values that bind Britain together as a liberal democracy with their particular religious identity."
Yassin Kadi Launches Claim Against US Administration
Sheikh Yassin Abdullah Kadi, a Saudi Arabian businessman and philanthropist, has issued proceedings against various members of the Bush administration relating to a series of unconstitutional actions taken against him.