Order of the Court of Florence No. 1300 of 21 January 2014

In its judgment of 2012 on the case Immunities of the State, the International Court of Justice stated that in accordance with the international customary rules on State immunity, Italy has no jurisdiction to decide on claims brought against Germany by Italian nationals who had suffered damage as a consequence of war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in Italy by the Third Reich during World War II. Through order No. 1300 of 2014, the Court of Florence raised the question of whether said customary norms, as interpreted by the ICJ, are consistent with the fundamental values guaranteed by the Italian Constitution, most precisely: human rights protection (Article 2) and the right to a judicial remedy (Article 24). It is true that the norms of general international law are part of the domestic legal system, as provided by Article 10 of the Constitution; however, they are not of a constitutional rank, and remain subjected to scrutiny by the Constitutional Court as regards their consistency with the fundamental principles of the Italian legal order. For the same reason, the Court of Florence asked the Constitutional Court to also examine the constitutional legitimacy of law No. 848/1957, through which Italy implemented the UN Charter – including the obligation to conform with the ICJ decisions ex Article 94 – and of law No. 5 of 2013 (concerning ratification and implementation of the UN Convention on Jurisdictional Immunities of States and Their Property), which explicitly provides the obligation of Italian courts to deny their own competence in the cases above, for complying with the ICJ judgment of 2012.

  • See also:

    Judgment of the International Court of Justice, 3 February 2012, Jurisdictional Immunities of the State (Germany v. Italy ;

    Law No. 5 of 14 January 2013, Accession of the Republic of Italy to the UN Convention on Jurisdictional Immunities of States and Their Property;

    Decision of the Court of Cassation, I Criminal Section, No. 32139 of 30 May 2012; Decision of the Constitutional Court No. 238 of 22 October 2014

  • Original language: Italiano