Libel Wars Pending?

This is really interesting. EUobserver reports that the Danish minister of justice has called on the European Commission to put a stop to a lawsuit by a Saudi lawyer who is using the UK’s courts to go after Danish newspapers for their publication of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed.

The lawyer Faisal Yamani is suing the Danish papers for damages in British courts on behalf of 95,000 descendents of the prophet who say they and their faith have been defamed. The idea is to use the Rome II regulation on the law applicable to non-contractual obligations, as well as the Brussels I regulation on jurisdiction and the recognition and enforcement of judgments in civil and commercial matters and to enforce the judgment on the Danish newspapers in Denmark.

The Commission rightly says that it has no power to intervene in such an area. The UK government says that the justice secretary has set up a working group to examine a range of issues around the substantive law on libel.

In any case I would argue that a possible court decision in the UK should not be recognized by Denmark on the basis of art. 34, para. 1 Brussels I: i.e. that such recognition is manifestly contrary to public policy in the Member State in which recognition is sought.

One response to “Libel Wars Pending?

  1. I think so, though Denmark is part of the EU but each Member State has jurisdiction to some legal matters in which the issue is part of it.

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