The most popular book withdrawn from the official library at the United Nations gives advice on how diplomats and other officials can avoid criminal charges abroad, the organisation has revealed.
The Dag Hammarskjold Library provides books and information to secretariat staff, diplomats, and delegates at the UN’s headquarters in New York City.
The most popular book taken out in 2015 was “Immunity of Heads of State and State Officials for International Crimes” by author Ramona Pedretti, the library said.
The organisation used its Twitter account to publicise the finding, leading some social media users to suggest that international officials might have a nefarious and direct need for the tome’s legal advice.
“Guys. Why would you brag about this this is not good,” one user posted.
Diplomats, heads of state, and other foreign officials on official business can avoid some laws under long-standing international agreements.
In London the Greater London Authority is in a state of open diplomatic war with a number of embassies who refuse to pay the city’s congestion charge toll.
The diplomats claim the charge is a tax from which they should be exempt.
The total owed to British taxpayers by the diplomats was £82m as of figures released in summer 2014.
Diplomatic immunity is only waived when serious crimes unconnected to a person’s diplomatic role are committed.
The ordinary way of dealing with diplomatic staff who cause serious problems for a host country is to expel them