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Article Archive for February 2009

ICC Decision on the Indictment of Sudan’s President and Possible Outcomes

27/02/2009 – 12:35 pm | One Comment

Speculation is rife on the eve of the decision of the International Criminal Court (ICC) expected to be released on the 4th of March 2009, about the issuance of an arrest warrant for Sudan’s President, Omar Al Bashir. Last year, chief ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo asked the court’s judges to indict Bashir for orchestrating what he described as a campaign of genocide in Sudan’s …

From Nuremberg to the International Criminal Court

26/02/2009 – 9:31 pm | Comments Off on From Nuremberg to the International Criminal Court

Chicago Public Radio recently published an interview with Benjamin Ferencz, one of the chief prosecutors of the Nuremburg Trials, that is well worth listening to. At the young age of 27 Mr. Ferencz became the prosecutor in the so-called Einsatzgruppen Trial, where (between September 1947 and April 1948) 24 members of the Einsatzgruppen were tried. The indictments included crimes against humanity, war crimes, and membership in …

Business’ responsibilities in relation to right to water

25/02/2009 – 4:40 pm | One Comment

Institute for Human Rights and Business has recently published the draft report on Business, Human Rights and the Right to Water: Challenges, Dilemmas and Opportunities, Roundtable Consultative Report. The Reports attempts to ‘summarise the points of view of a group of individuals representing business, international organisations, and civil society who have contributed to issues pertaining to the right to water.’ In this way, it suggests …

Romania and Ukraine Maritime Boundary Case

25/02/2009 – 1:09 pm | Comments Off on Romania and Ukraine Maritime Boundary Case

I wanted to follow up on Gentian’s post on recent activity at the ICJ with a more detailed consideration of the judgment in the Case Concerning Maritime Delimitation in the Black Sea delivered by the Court at the beginning of February.
Although both Romania and Ukraine are a party to the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, Ukraine has opted out …

Cultivating Peace and Security As A Means of Protecting Human Rights In Africa: Back to the Basics

25/02/2009 – 10:44 am | Comments Off on Cultivating Peace and Security As A Means of Protecting Human Rights In Africa: Back to the Basics

Africa is a continent where conflict is rife. Peace and security is arguably absent in many African states and human rights are not protected. The responsibility for ensuring peace and stability lies with the African Union (AU), at least at the regional level. It is a good to reflect on the provisions within the AU in this regard.
Article 23 (1) of the Charter on Human …

Gabor Rona on the definition of "enemy combatant"

25/02/2009 – 10:38 am | Comments Off on Gabor Rona on the definition of "enemy combatant"

Jurist has an interesting article on the need of the Obama Administration to redefine the concept of “enemy combatant”. The article picks up a discussion that has been going on for the last couple of years and which has been characterized by a clash of different schools of dealing with international terrorism from the perspective of international law.
In the article Gabor Rona, who is International …

Updates on the Activity of the International Court of Justice (January-February 2009)

24/02/2009 – 11:32 am | Comments Off on Updates on the Activity of the International Court of Justice (January-February 2009)

Elections at the ICJ.
On 6 February 2009 Judge Hisashi Owada (Japan) was elected President of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) by his peers and Judge Peter Tomka (Slovakia) was elected Vice-President, each for a term of three years.
Elections were also held for the Chamber of Summary Procedure and of the Budgetary and Administrative Committee of the Court. Article 29 of the Court’s Statute provides …

ECJ Elgafaji judgment and the 'exceptional objectivity' test for refugee protection

21/02/2009 – 12:04 pm | Comments Off on ECJ Elgafaji judgment and the 'exceptional objectivity' test for refugee protection

Having only recently considered the normative importance and weight of the provision in Article 15(c) of the European Refugee Qualification Directive (mentioned here and here), the following is a timely and, to a certain extent, also welcomed judicial instance.
On 17 January the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Justice rendered its preliminary ruling in the case of  C-465/07 Elgafaji v Saatssecreteris van Justitie, concerning …

Sloane on Jus ad bellum and in bello

19/02/2009 – 12:19 pm | Comments Off on Sloane on Jus ad bellum and in bello

Following discussions in relation to the legality of the armed conflict in Gaza and the alleged violations of international law by the two belligerents (see here, here and here), some of you might find Professor Sloane’s recent paper, titled “The Cost of Conflation: Preserving the Dualism of Jus ad Bellum and Jus in Bello in the Contemporary Law of War”,  just published in Yale Journal …

Kosovo a Year on

17/02/2009 – 3:56 pm | Comments Off on Kosovo a Year on

Today marks the one year anniversary of Kosovo declaring independence from Serbia. In many ways, the first year has been a mix of fortunes and misfortunes. Most importantly, Kosovo has largely remained peaceful despite initial warnings that the declaration of independence would lead to unrest and further fighting in the area. Kosovo’s politicians, its population and its neighbouring countries deserve credit for this. On the …

'Buy American' and the WTO

17/02/2009 – 10:04 am | Comments Off on 'Buy American' and the WTO

There are growing signs of discontent with the ‘Buy American’ clause in the USA’s financial stimulus bill – a stipulation that “any public building or public works project funded by the new stimulus package use only iron, steel and other manufactured goods produced in the United States.” It now appears that this part of the stimulus package will be challenged by Brazil in the Dispute …

Cambodian Extraordinary Chambers open first trial

17/02/2009 – 12:40 am | One Comment

Today, on Tuesday 17 February at 9 p.m. the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) open their first trial (see the court schedule on the ECCC website). With a delay of several decades the first Khmer Rouge will be tried for his involvement in crimes against humanity committed under the Pol Pot regime, which haunted Cambodia from 1975 to 1979.  The “killing fields” …

Article 12(3) of the Rome Statute: An intrinsic misnomer?

16/02/2009 – 7:53 pm | Comments Off on Article 12(3) of the Rome Statute: An intrinsic misnomer?

* This post was co-authored with Benjamin Agsteribbe, formerly of the University of Amsterdam, and currently a researcher at HaMoked – Center for the defence of the individual in East Jerusalem.
Some of our, and others’, previous posts have taken to outline the main legal issues that arise of the recent declaration submitted by the Palestinian Ministry of Justice in acceptance of the jurisdiction of …

New International Law Journal

16/02/2009 – 8:39 am | Comments Off on New International Law Journal

A new student-run but peer-reviewed international law journal has been launched by the Institute for Public International and European Law of the Georg-August University Göttingen. The journal will be available online and will be published in English only. First issue is out and it looks very promising.

UK Home Office Guidance Note on Israel, Gaza and West Bank and European asylum policy

14/02/2009 – 9:48 pm | Comments Off on UK Home Office Guidance Note on Israel, Gaza and West Bank and European asylum policy

The UK Home Office has issued a February 2009 Operational Guidance Note on Israel, Gaza and the West Bank setting out the main types of asylum claim, human rights claim and Humanitarian Protection claim (whether explicit or implied) that are expected to be submitted on behalf of individuals arriving to the UK from the region. A number of interesting submissions are included in the report, …

Arrest Order for Bashir Approved

12/02/2009 – 11:31 am | Comments Off on Arrest Order for Bashir Approved

NY Times reports that judges at the ICC have now approved the arrest warrant for President Omar Hassan al-Bashir of Sudan. We have previously blogged on the issue here and here. The decision has not yet been made public. It is the first time that he Court is seeking the arrest of an incumbent head of state.
The matter is, as noted by Julian Ku, controversial …

The ICC and Palestine

11/02/2009 – 12:29 pm | Comments Off on The ICC and Palestine

Following Dominik’s post below with regard to the Prosecutor of the ICC launching a “preliminary analysis” into the fighting in Gaza and the applicability of the ICC Statute, it might be worth directing the attention of our readers to the website of the ICC where you can find the actual documents relating to this “preliminary analysis”. Here you may find the letter from the Palestinian …

Recent Blog Additions

10/02/2009 – 8:48 am | Comments Off on Recent Blog Additions

It could be that we have not paid much attention to what has been going on in the “outside blogosphere” this year, but a number of new relevant and highly interesting international blogs have recently been launched. These include
Aid Watch which asks critical questions of the international aid community and its affiliates,
Environment and Law which is an environmental and energy law blog written jointly by …