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8 Int'l Comm. L. Rev. 81 (2006)
The Due Diligence Principle under International Law

handle is hein.journals/intlfddb8 and id is 85 raw text is: International Community Law Review 8: 81-121, 2006.                            81
© 2006 Koninklijke Brill NV Printed in the Netherlands.
The Due Diligence Principle Under International Law
ROBERT P. BARNIDGE, JR.*
Abstract.
This article explores the interface of state responsibility, non-state actors, and the due
diligence principle. It begins by examining the various principles of responsibility
under international law. After doing so, it closely considers the deliberations of the
International Law Commission on the topic of state responsibility. In light of these
developments, attention is then paid to exactly what has been expected of states with
regard to the activities of non-state actors during the last century. This overview
focuses on the due diligence principle, a principle which, it is argued, can be restric-
tively or expansively interpreted, as the particular facts and circumstances require, to
hold states responsible for their actions or omissions related to non-state actors.
1. Introduction
There has been much talk in recent years of the role of non-state actors in a historically
state-centric international legal order. Although much progress has been made on the
law of state responsibility, particularly thanks to James Crawford's special rappor-
teurship on the project at the International Law Commission (ILC), there does not yet
exist a corresponding comprehensive framework for the international responsibility
of non-state actors. This may lead one to conclude that a lacuna exists in the law of
responsibility.
This article explores the interface of state responsibility, non-state actors, and the due
diligence principle. It begins by examining the various principles of responsibility
under international law. After doing so, it closely considers the deliberations of the ILC
on the topic of state responsibility. In light of these developments, attention is then paid
to exactly what has been expected of states with regard to the activities of non-state
actors during the last century. This overview focuses on the due diligence principle,
a principle which, it is argued, can be restrictively or expansively interpreted, as the
* BA, summa cum laude, University of Notre Dame, 1999; JD, University of North Carolina, 2003; LLM
Public International Law, University of Amsterdam, 2004; PhD Candidate, School of Law, Queen's
University Belfast, research commenced October 2004. The author would like to acknowledge the gen-
erous financial support of the Overseas Research Students Awards Scheme and Queen's University Belfast
to his current research. While accepting full responsibility for this article's content, the author would like
to thank Prof. Phil Scraton and Dr. Jean Allain of the School of Law, Queen's University Belfast, for their
valuable comments. A much less exhaustive study of the due diligence principle under international law
appears in Robert P. Barnidge, Jr., States'Due Diligence Obligations with Regard to International Non-
State Terrorist Organizations Post-ll September 2001: The Heavy Burden That States Must Bear, 16 IR.
STuD. INT'LAFF. 103, 106-10 (2005).

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