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Article Archive for April 2009

The Quandaries of National Human Rights Litigation – Legitimisation through Resistance?

30/04/2009 – 10:27 pm | 2 Comments

Michael Sfard a renowned Israeli human rights lawyer who is often recalled for his work with cases concerning the route of the Separation Wall in the OPT and the founding of the lawyers’ volunteer network, Yesh Din, has recently published an article titled ‘The Price of Internal Legal Opposition to Human Rights Abuses’ in the first issue of the new Oxford Journal, Human Rights Practice.
The …

New UN Special Rapporteur reports on the Human Rights situation in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967

29/04/2009 – 1:39 pm | 2 Comments

The UN Special Rapporteur on the situation in the Palestinian Territories occupied since 1967 has come out with updated reports on the situation in the region in the last months. In fact, he has produced two separate reports: the first report is a combined report by a number of different UN Rapporteurs (inc. the Special Rapporteur on the right to an attainable standard of physical …

The Swine Flu Outbreak and International Law

28/04/2009 – 3:50 pm | 4 Comments

ASIL Insights published an interesting article on “The Swine Flu Outbreak and International Law” that is well worth a read. In the article Prof. David P. Fidler from the Indiana University Maurer School of Law, Bloomington, gives an assessment of how the International Health Regulations 2005 (IHR 2005) – adopted by the World Health Organization in an effort to revise the international rules on infectious diseases …

Srebrenica genocide and the inaccurate film Resolution 819

27/04/2009 – 7:55 am | 5 Comments

European movie theatres are currently screening the film Resolution 819 reconstructing the atrocities perpetrated in and around Srebrenica in July 1995. A French-Polish co-production represents the first attempt to portray the events surrounding genocide of 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys in and around Srebrenica in July 1995 on the big screen. The film has inter alia won an audience award at 2008 Rome film …

UN CAT briefing reports on Israel's implementation of the Convention

26/04/2009 – 3:40 pm | One Comment

UN Committee’s against Torture (CAT) 42nd session is on its way and it has recently been receiving reports from various international and local NGO as well as various other expert bodies with regards to a particular region for the purpose of assessing their compliance with the provisions of the Convention. Israel submitted its state report to the Committee on 12 December 2007 with little to …

European Parliament approves trade agreement with Turkmenistan despite its problematic human rights record

25/04/2009 – 11:11 pm | Comments Off on European Parliament approves trade agreement with Turkmenistan despite its problematic human rights record

This week, on 22 April 2009, the European Parliament approved an interim trade agreement with Turkmenistan (for the full text of the resolution see here). Such an agreement would facilitate market access of Turkmen goods to the European Community and vice versa. This information would probably not be worthy of more than a minor note in some EU newsletter if Turkmenistan was not a notorious …

Interdisciplinary Journal of Human Rights Law Call for Papers 2009-2010

24/04/2009 – 8:12 am | One Comment

IJHRL is an annual, peer-reviewed journal published by the Council for American Students in International Negotiations. The journal invites quality submissions from scholars, jurists, and professionals in fields related to human rights and international humanitarian law. IJHRL also welcomes review essays, book reviews, and comments/notes.

Are Somali Pirates Mere Robin Hoods?

23/04/2009 – 8:59 am | Comments Off on Are Somali Pirates Mere Robin Hoods?

For some time now, the argument that the pirates terrorising the waters off the coast of Somalia are a combination of environmentalists and Robin Hoods has been popping up (although it has not received the same amount of attention as the gripping stories of how the pirates held captain Richard Phillips of the Maersk Alabama hostage before eventually being killed by US forces).  This week, …

Abyei Arbitration

21/04/2009 – 11:45 am | Comments Off on Abyei Arbitration

On Saturday 18 April, oral proceedings opened in the Abyei Arbitration between the Government of Sudan and the Sudan People’s Liberation Movement/Army.  The case is taking place at the Permanent Court of Arbitration in The Hague.  The legal issues raised in the proceedings are relatively familiar to many international lawyers, involving the delimitation and demarcation of land territory.  However, this arbitration has a number of …

Neil MacCormick (1941-2009)

20/04/2009 – 4:01 pm | Comments Off on Neil MacCormick (1941-2009)

Sir Professor Neil MacCormick, the leading and kindest contemporary legal philosopher, former Scottish MEP and advocate for Scottish independence recently passed away. You can read obituaries here and here. He will be greatly missed.

Perpetual Conflict between Human Rights and Politics in the Development of International Criminal Justice

20/04/2009 – 8:53 am | 2 Comments

The existence and development of humankind on this planet has never been an egalitarian process. This partly explains the birth and development of law and legal institutions to regulate the conduct and behaviour of mankind in its intercourse with one another. Admittedly the existence of law and legal institutions does not attest to the quality of justice attained at any stage in the development of …

More Join the 'Racism' Conference Boycott

19/04/2009 – 1:07 pm | 9 Comments

[See here and here for further reading.]
The movement to boycott the ‘Durban II’ Review Conference on racism appears to be gathering pace. Not only have the US, Israel, Canada and Italy decided not to attend, but now Sweden, The Netherlands and Australia have joined them.
According to Stephen Smith, Australia’s Foreign Minister:
“The 2001 Declaration [at the first conference on racism at Durban] singled out Israel and …

International Idealism Meets Domestic-Criminal-Procedure Realism

17/04/2009 – 7:50 am | Comments Off on International Idealism Meets Domestic-Criminal-Procedure Realism

This is the title of a paper by Professors Stephanos Bibas and William Burke-White just posted on SSRN. For readers with an interest in international criminal law this is a must read. In their paper, Bibas and Burke-White, inter alia, argue that scholarship dealing with international criminal law has to a large extent overlooked procedural issues. Moreover, the authors argue, which is a very valid …

Germany to boycott the Durban Review Conference?

16/04/2009 – 8:50 pm | Comments Off on Germany to boycott the Durban Review Conference?

As we reported earlier, the upcoming Durban Review Conference is likely to be boycotted by a number of States due to the fear that the event becomes little more than a forum for anti-semitic opinions. It is now reported in the Spiegel (in german) that Germany is “very likely” to stay away from the conference that is to start on monday. It would be the first …

Irish Centre for Human Rights – Summer Schools

16/04/2009 – 11:52 am | Comments Off on Irish Centre for Human Rights – Summer Schools

[Below you will find an announcement for this year’s summer schools organized by the Irish Centre for Human Rights. I can really recommend these summer schools. They gather a number of very interesting scholars and practitioners, are very well organized, and take place in the beautiful surrounding of the city of Galway. Thanks to Maria Varaki for this reminder!] 
Irish Centre for Human Rights
Summer Schools
The Irish …

Piracy seminar at the Scandinavian Institute of Maritime Law (University of Oslo)-in Norwegian

15/04/2009 – 4:23 pm | One Comment

Sjørøvere i sjøretten (Sea Pirates in the law of the sea) on the 29th of April. The seminar is held in Norwegian/Danish:

Continental Shelf Settlement for Norway

15/04/2009 – 4:16 pm | Comments Off on Continental Shelf Settlement for Norway

The Commission on the Limits of Continental Shelf (New York) has today decided that Norway’s claim on the limits of its continental shelf in the Northern Areas is justified, albeit with some exceptions. As a result, limits of the Norwegian continental shelf are clarified and Norway now has around 235 000 km2, and major part lies in the North. However, the Commission has changed the …

Piracy off the Horn of Africa Underscores the Need for a Comprehensive Effort on the Part of the International Community to Restore Order in Somalia

15/04/2009 – 3:53 pm | Comments Off on Piracy off the Horn of Africa Underscores the Need for a Comprehensive Effort on the Part of the International Community to Restore Order in Somalia

Piracy is not a new phenomenon. It has existed for probably as long as sailing itself. While it was largely believed to be something of the past, it has made a notorious comeback in the last decade or so. Piracy is a domestic crime, besides being a crime under the law of nations attracting universal jurisdiction. From the kidnapping of Julius Caesar, in 75 B.C., …