Jonathan I. Blackman’s practice focuses on litigation, including international litigation and arbitration, securities law, banking and insurance law. 

He has participated in numerous international arbitrations involving both public international law and complex commercial disputes, litigation involving the immunity of foreign states and their agencies under the U.S. Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act, and securities and commercial litigation in a variety of U.S. federal and state courts. Jonathan is heavily involved in representing a number of sovereigns in litigation in the United States and elsewhere, as well as representing corporate and other clients in actions in U.S. courts.

Jonathan joined the firm in 1977 and became a partner in 1985. From 1977 to 2009, he was resident in the New York office. Since then he has been resident in New York and London.

Notable Experience

International Arbitration (Treaty and Commercial)

  • Telecom Italia in entirely defeating a $15 billion claim, one of the largest reported commercial arbitration cases, in an ICC arbitration arising from the settlement of disputes over the control of Brasil Telecom.

  • Tatneft in an UNCITRAL arbitration against Ukraine under the Russia-Ukraine bilateral investment treaty, resulting in a nine-figure award in favor of Tatneft.

  • The Russian Federation in an UNCITRAL arbitration under the Italy-Russia bilateral investment treaty, the first-ever case under that treaty, resulting in the dismissal of all claims against it.

  • Vale S.A. in LCIA arbitration seated in London in a dispute arising out of a joint venture agreement related to a West African project governed by English law.

  • The Ministry of Electricity of the Republic of Iraq in obtaining an award in its favor dismissing all claims in a construction dispute in an AAA arbitration and several ICC arbitrations.

  • Valeo in obtaining a $67 million award in its favor in a purchase price adjustment accounting arbitration.

  • OOO Vklad and other Russian investors in obtaining full recovery of their claims in an ICC arbitration.

  • Kookmin Bank in obtaining an award in its favor on all claims in an ICC proceeding.

  • Goodyear Tire & Rubber in an ICC arbitration, resulting in the dismissal of substantially all claims against it and a substantial award of costs in its favor.

  • The Bank for International Settlements in arbitrations administered by the Permanent Court of Arbitration in the Hague regarding the mandatory redemption of its privately held shares.

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International and Other Litigation

  • Republic of Argentina v. NML Capital, 134 S. Ct. 2250 (2014) (U.S. Supreme Court case on scope of discovery under Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act).

  • BG plc v. Republic of Argentina, 134 S. Ct. 1198 (2014) (U.S. Supreme Court case on scope of review of arbitral award under bilateral investment treaty).

  • Al-Tamimi v. Adelson, 2017 WL 3738415 (D.D.C. 2017) (dismissal of Alien Tort Statute claims for lack of justiciability under political question doctrine.

  • Rio Tinto PLC v. Vale S.A., 2015 WL 7769534 (S.D.N.Y. 2015) (dismissal of civil RICO claim under statute of limitations and failure to plead RICO “pattern”).

  • Hoffman v. L&M Arts, 2014 WL 4375667 (N.D. Tex. 2014) (grant of judgment as a matter of law in case involving alleged breach of confidentiality agreement involving sale of a valuable painting).

  • Bulgartabac Holding AD v. The Republic of Iraq, 451 Fed. Appx. 9 (2d Cir. 2011) (affirming statute of limitations dismissal of claims against Iraq).

  • NML Ltd v. Banco Central de la Republica Argentina, 652 F. 3d 172 (2d Cir. 2011) (reversal of attachment of central bank reserves).

  • Aurelius Capital Partners v. Republic of Argentina, 584 F.3d 120, (2d Cir. 2009) (reversal of attachment of Argentina pension fund assets).

  • Agrocomplect, AD v. Republic of Iraq, 524 F. Supp. 2d 16 (D.D.C. 2007) (dismissing claims against Republic of Iraq for lack of jurisdiction under FSIA), aff’d, 2008 304 Fed. App’x 872 (D.C. Cir. Nov. 14, 2008).

  • Rubin v. Pixelplus, 2007 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 17671 (E.D.N.Y. Mar. 13, 2007) (denying remand of “pure” Securities Act class action removed to federal court under SLUSA).

  • Banco Nacional de México, S.A. v. Société Générale, 820 N.Y.S.2d 588 (1st Dep’t 2006) (holding that Mexican injunction against payment on letter of credit should not be granted comity as a defense to confirming bank’s claim for reimbursement for payment on conforming demand).

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Selected Activities

  • Member, Association of the Bar of the City of New York (Chair, International Law Committee, 2001-2004)
  • Executive Committee Member, International Law and Practice Section, New York State Bar Association
  • Member, American Law Institute