Dual nationality and International Law in times of globalization. Challenges and opportunities for consular assistance and diplomatic protection in recent cases

Walter Arevalo-Ramirez, Robert Joseph Blaise Maclean


This article studies the interaction of nationality and international law as it may apply to individuals caught in international disputes between states of which they are nationals. The objective of the article is to examine this problem through the lens of the figures of Consular Assistance and Diplomatic Protection. Regarding the methodology, the paper will be elaborated within the following structure. Part 1 will deal with the general concept of nationality at international law. Part 2 will examine “Consular Assistance”, its source, function and application. Part 3 will examine a separate and distinct facet of international law called “Diplomatic Protection” (as distinguished from “Diplomatic Immunity”) and its application to the protection of nationals as well as its weaknesses. Part 4, which develops the original value of this contribution, consist of an analysis of these particular protective measures within the context of particular cases so as to illustrate the weaknesses of these figures as protective of individuals, the limits of nationality as a shield for individuals caught up in international disputes and the almost “second-class” nature of dual nationality from an international law perspective. Part 5 as a conclusion will include some observations as to how states may improve the protections they can afford to their nationals abroad.


nationality, effective nationality, dual national, globalization, citizenship, jus sanguinis, jus soli, consular assistance, diplomatic protection

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.5102/rdi.v17i2.6451

ISSN 2236-997X (impresso) - ISSN 2237-1036 (on-line)

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