The Stellenbosch Consensus on Legal National Responses to Public Health Risks

International Organizations Law Review (2020)

68 Pages Posted: 14 Dec 2020

See all articles by Roojin Habibi

Roojin Habibi

York University - Osgoode Hall Law School

Steven Hoffman

York University

Gian Luca Burci

University of Geneva - Graduate Institute, Geneva (IHEID)

Thana Cristina de Campos

University of Cambridge

Danwood Chirwa

University of Cape Town (UCT) - Faculty of Law

Margherita Cinà

York University

Stéphanie Dagron

University of Geneva

Mark Eccleston-Turner

Keele University, Staffordshire, United Kingdom

Lisa Forman

University of Toronto

Lawrence O. Gostin

Georgetown University - Law Center - O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law

Benjamin Mason Meier

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Stefania Negri

University of Salerno

Gorik Ooms

Institute of Tropical Medicine (ITM)

Sharifah Sekalala

University of Warwick

Allyn Taylor

University of Washington - School of Law

Alicia Ely Yamin

Harvard University - Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics; Harvard University - Harvard Law School; Partners in Health; Chr. Michelsen Institute (CMI) - Center on Law and Social Transformation

Date Written: December 2, 2020

Abstract

The International Health Regulations (IHR), of which the World Health Organization is custodian, govern how countries collectively promote global health security, including prevention, detection, and response to global health emergencies such as the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Countries are permitted to exercise their sovereignty in taking additional health measures to respond to such emergencies if these measures adhere to Article 43 of this legally binding instrument. Overbroad measures taken during recent public health emergencies of international concern, however, reveal that the provision remains inadequately understood. A shared understanding of the measures legally permitted by Article 43 is a necessary step in ensuring the fulfillment of obligations, and fostering global solidarity and resilience in the face of future pandemics. In this consensus statement, public international law scholars specializing in global health consider the legal meaning of Article 43 using the interpretive framework of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties.

Keywords: Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, International Health Regulations, international organizations, World Health Organization, global health law, pandemics, travel bans, trade restrictions

Suggested Citation

Habibi, Roojin and Hoffman, Steven and Burci, Gian Luca and de Campos, Thana Cristina and Chirwa, Danwood and Cinà, Margherita and Dagron, Stéphanie and Eccleston-Turner, Mark and Forman, Lisa and Gostin, Lawrence O. and Meier, Benjamin Mason and Negri, Stefania and Ooms, Gorik and Sekalala, Sharifah and Taylor, Allyn and Yamin, Alicia Ely, The Stellenbosch Consensus on Legal National Responses to Public Health Risks (December 2, 2020). International Organizations Law Review (2020), Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3746649

Roojin Habibi (Contact Author)

York University - Osgoode Hall Law School ( email )

4700 Keele Street
Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3
Canada

Steven Hoffman

York University ( email )

Global Strategy Lab
4700 Keele Street
Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3
Canada
+1-416-736-2100 ext 33364 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://www.globalstrategylab.org/team/steven-hoffman

Gian Luca Burci

University of Geneva - Graduate Institute, Geneva (IHEID) ( email )

Geneva
Switzerland

Thana Cristina De Campos

University of Cambridge ( email )

Trinity Ln
Cambridge, CB2 1TN
United Kingdom

Danwood Chirwa

University of Cape Town (UCT) - Faculty of Law ( email )

Private Bag
Rondebosch 7701
South Africa

Margherita Cinà

York University ( email )

4700 Keele Street
Toronto, Ontario M3J 1P3
Canada

Stéphanie Dagron

University of Geneva ( email )

102 Bd Carl-Vogt
Genève, CH - 1205
Switzerland

Mark Eccleston-Turner

Keele University, Staffordshire, United Kingdom ( email )

School of Politics, Philosophy, International Rela
Staffordshire, SD
United Kingdom

Lisa Forman

University of Toronto ( email )

Toronto, Ontario M5S 3G8
Canada

Lawrence O. Gostin

Georgetown University - Law Center - O'Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law ( email )

600 New Jersey Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001
United States
202-662-9038 (Phone)
202-662-9055 (Fax)

Benjamin Mason Meier

University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill ( email )

CB 3435
103 Abernethy Hall
Chapel Hill, NC 27599
United States
919-962-0542 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.benjaminmasonmeier.com/

Stefania Negri

University of Salerno ( email )

Via Giovanni Paolo II, 132
Fisciano, Salerno 84084
Italy

Gorik Ooms

Institute of Tropical Medicine (ITM) ( email )

Antwerp
Belgium

Sharifah Sekalala

University of Warwick ( email )

Gibbet Hill Rd.
Coventry, West Midlands CV4 8UW
United Kingdom

Allyn Taylor

University of Washington - School of Law ( email )

William H. Gates Hall
Box 353020
Seattle, WA 98105-3020
United States

Alicia Ely Yamin

Harvard University - Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics ( email )

23 Everett Street
Cambridge, MA 02155
United States

Harvard University - Harvard Law School ( email )

1563 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Partners in Health ( email )

641 Huntington Ave, 1st Floor
Boston, MA 02115
United States

Chr. Michelsen Institute (CMI) - Center on Law and Social Transformation ( email )

PO Box 6033 Postterminalen
Bergen, NO-5892
Norway

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