There are two essential grounds on which the English courts may be legally constrained in substantive terms1 from adjudicating upon conduct implicating international law on the part specifically2 of foreign states. International law nonetheless informs the application of both. The two grounds, the precise contours of which remain unsettled, are both now treated under the rubric of the foreign act of state doctrine, even if they are considered distinct strands of that doctrine3.
As a general rule, founded on international comity and in acknowledgement of the sovereign equality of states4, the English courts will recognise and give effect to a
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