Diplomatic bag

Handbag Shopping bag Diplomatic mission
A Swedish diplomatic pouch.

A diplomatic bag, also known as a diplomatic pouch, is a container with certain legal protections used for carrying official correspondence or other items between a diplomatic mission and its home government or other diplomatic, consular, or otherwise official entity.[1] The physical concept of a "diplomatic bag" is flexible and therefore can take many forms (e.g., a cardboard box, briefcase, duffel bag, large suitcase, crate or even a shipping container).[1]

Additionally, a diplomatic bag usually has some form of lock and/or tamper-evident seal attached to it in order to deter or detect interference by unauthorized third parties. The most important point is that as long as it is externally marked to show its status, the "bag" has diplomatic immunity from search or seizure,[2] as codified in article 27 of the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations.[3] It may only contain articles intended for official use.[3] It is often escorted by a diplomatic courier, who is similarly immune from arrest and detention.[2][3]

A Chinese diplomatic bag.

Noteworthy shipments

See also


  1. ^ a b Boczek, Boleslaw Adam (2005). International Law: A Dictionary. Scarecrow Press. pp. 51–52. ISBN 0-8108-5078-8.
  2. ^ a b c d "Diplomatic bag: The inside story". BBC News. March 10, 2000. Retrieved 2008-10-05.
  3. ^ a b c "Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations 1961" (PDF). United Nations. Retrieved 2008-10-05., p. 8
  4. ^ "Italy Expels 2 Egyptian Envoys Accused in Trunk Abduction Attempt". The New York Times. November 19, 1964. p. 1. Retrieved 2019-11-18.
  5. ^ a b c Javaid Rehman. Islamic State Practices, International Law and the Threat from Terrorism. Hart Publishing. Retrieved 2008-10-05.
  6. ^ "Kidnapped by Egypt: The Spy In The Air Express Trunk—It's Fact, Not Fiction—And It Has Happened Before". Prince George (B.C.) Citizen (p. 1). November 18, 1964.
  7. ^ "Argentina's 1982 attempt on Gibraltar". Gibraltar Chronicle. December 28, 2012. Archived from the original on December 3, 2013. Retrieved December 1, 2013.
  8. ^ Rayner, Gordon (2009-10-16). "Yvonne Fletcher, Libya and betrayal of justice: timeline". The Daily Telegraph. London.
    Rayner, Gordon; Hope, Christopher (2009-10-16). "WPc Yvonne Fletcher: 'We have guns and there will be fighting'". The Daily Telegraph. London.
    "1984: Libyan embassy siege ends". BBC News. 1984-04-27.
  9. ^ "Space Station Toilet Parts Set for Liftoff". Archived from the original on 2012-10-01.
  10. ^ Associated Press, Cocaine seized at UN in New York, 26 January 2012
  11. ^ http://www.starpoly.com/comunicado/
  12. ^ "UK protest at Gibraltar diplomatic bag opening". BBC News. 2013-11-26.
  13. ^ Fiona Govan (27 November 2013). "Spain dismisses Gibraltar diplomatic bag incident". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 4 December 2013.
  14. ^ http://www.rtve.es/noticias/20131126/reino-unido-protesta-ante-espana-apertura-valija-diplomatica-gibraltar/802621.shtml (in Spanish)
  15. ^ https://gulfnews.com/world/asia/india/former-uae-consulate-employee-swapna-suresh-involved-in-kerala-gold-smuggling-prosecutor-1.1594382741176/