Jurisdiction

The Nederlandse Taalunie (Dutch Language Union) was established by means of a treaty between the States of Belgium and the Netherlands (see 1 and 2). This Treaty concerning the Dutch Language Union has been filed with the United Nations in the United Nations Treaty Series (see 3).  As the relevant legal literature confirms (see 4), the Dutch Language Union is an international organization. Article 16 of the Treaty concerning the Dutch Language Union stipulates that the Union enjoys the privileges and immunities ‘that are necessary to perform the duties and achieve the Dutch Language Union’s objectives’. Belgium and the Netherlands laid down these privileges and immunities in a separate Protocol (see 5), including jurisdictional immunity in respect of any and all acts that the General Secretary performs in his official capacity (see 6). As an international organization, the Union has a Dispute Resolution Regulations and a Dispute Resolution Commission, before which disputes may be brought. A free English translation of the Dispute Resolution Regulations can be requested from the General Secretariat at info@taalunie.org, but no rights can be derived from it. If there are any discrepancies between the different language versions, the original version in Dutch prevails.

  1. The Treaty between the Kingdom of Belgium and the Kingdom of the Netherlands concerning the Dutch Language Union (Verdrag tussen het Koninkrijk België en het Koninkrijk der Nederlanden inzake de Nederlandse Taalunie) was executed in Brussels, Belgium, on 9 September 1980 (to be referred to as the ‘Treaty concerning the Dutch Language Union’). A free English translation of the Treaty concerning the Dutch Language Union can be requested from the General Secretariat at info@taalunie.org.
  2. See Article 1 of the Treaty concerning the Dutch Language Union, which stipulates that the Kingdom of Belgium and the Kingdom of the Netherlands form the basis underlying the Dutch Language Union.
  3. The Treaty concerning the Dutch Language Union was filed on 13 April 1982 under number 20977.
  4. H.G. SCHERMERS and N. M. BLOKKER, International Institutional Law, 4th edition, Martinus Nijhoff, Leiden, the Netherlands, 2003, p. 28, note 109; N. SYBESMA-KNOL and K. WELLENS, Enige volkenrechtelijke vragen rond de Nederlandse Taalunie, in de Voorzetten 10 series, Stichting Bibliographica Nederlandica, The Hague, the Netherlands, 1987, p. 64.
  5. The Protocol of 13 July 1990 between the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the Kingdom of Belgium concerning privileges and immunities of the Dutch Language Union (Het Protocol van 13 juli 1990 tussen het Koninkrijk der Nederlanden en het Koninkrijk België inzake voorrechten en immuniteiten van de Nederlandse Taalunie).
  6. See Article 4 (2) of the Protocol between the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the Kingdom of Belgium concerning privileges and immunities of the Dutch Language Union.

Members
As at 1 January 2014, the following persons have been appointed as members of the Dispute Resolution Commission:

  • Geert van Haegendoren, Chairman;
  • Leen van Dijck; and
  • Bert Tahitu.