The Arantzazu Mendi Case (UK) 1939

The Arantzazu Mendi Case (UK) 1939

Principle: When there is effective control over the territory of a government of de fecto (recognition) a foreign court can not apply its jurisdiction over its matter.

Fact: During the Spanish Civil War, the UK recognized de jure the Republican government of Spain, but also recognized de facto the rebel government (the Nationalists). Both governments sued in British courts to control the Spanish-flagged vessel Arantzazu Mendi, when arrived in a British port.

Issue: whether the republican government shall have the right to possess the ship.

Decision: It was held: A de facto government has control over state assets within the territory it controls. A de jure government has control even over state assets abroad.

Reasoning: It was held by the House of Lords that since the Nationalist was a de-facto recognized sovereign ineffective contract over a large portion of Spain, it was immune from the jurisdiction of the local courts of other sovereign.



Rayhanul Islam

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