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Signing ceremony of the Treaty of Lisbon

13/12/2007 – 9:15 am | Comments Off on Signing ceremony of the Treaty of Lisbon

Today the Treaty of Lisbon amending the Treaty on the European Union and the Treaty establishing the European Community will be signed in Lisbon. The ceremony, at which all 27 heads of State and government of the European Union as well as the president of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso, the president of the European Parliament, Hans-Gert Pöttering and the president of the European …

Human Rights Day 2007 – Remember the UDHR?

10/12/2007 – 9:36 am | One Comment

Today (10th December) the world celebrates Human Rights Day. The event is meant as a commemoration of the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) which took place on 10 December 1948. Based on the fact that by next year the adoption of the UDHR was 60 years ago, Human Rights Day 2007 marks the start of a year-long commemoration of the 60th …

The EU and the International Criminal Court

10/12/2007 – 8:41 am | Comments Off on The EU and the International Criminal Court

The Council of the European Union recently published a report on the co-operation and interaction between the EU and the International Criminal Court (ICC) (an English version can be found here). The report highlights in particular how the EU can co-ordinate the foreign policy positions of the EU member States with regard to the activities of the ICC. Furthermore it underlines the commitment of the …

ICJ to deliver judgement on 13 December 2007

30/11/2007 – 2:57 pm | Comments Off on ICJ to deliver judgement on 13 December 2007

The International Court of Justice will deliver its judgment in the case concerning the Territorial and Maritime Dispute (Nicaragua v Colombia) on 13 December 2007 (see press release here). The judgment will merely deal with the preliminary objections by Colombia, regarding the jurisdiction of the Court. Stay tuned for an update here on International Law Observer as soon as the judgment has been delivered.

Extension of time-limits in the Case between Chile and the EC before the ITLOS (Sustainable Exploration of Swordfish Stocks)

30/11/2007 – 1:33 pm | Comments Off on Extension of time-limits in the Case between Chile and the EC before the ITLOS (Sustainable Exploration of Swordfish Stocks)

Today the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS), or rather the Special Chamber of the ITLOS which was formed by order of 20 December 2000, further extended the time-limits for the Case between Chile and the European Community concerning the Conservation and Sustainable Exploitation of Swordfish Stocks in the South-Eastern Pacific Ocean for one year until 1 January 2009 (the press release can be found here, …

International Bar Association publishes new monitoring report on the ICC

28/11/2007 – 10:37 pm | Comments Off on International Bar Association publishes new monitoring report on the ICC

The International Bar Association (IBA) recently published a new monitoring report concerning the International Criminal Court (ICC). According to the report itself, “the monitoring programe focus primarily on the fair trial rights of defendants before the Court and the manner in which the Rome Statute, Regulations of the Court and the Rules of Evidence and Procedure are implemented by the different organs of the Court.” The report …

3rd Biennial Conference of ESIL "coming up"

19/11/2007 – 2:11 pm | Comments Off on 3rd Biennial Conference of ESIL "coming up"

The third biennial Conference of the European Society of International Law will be held in Heidelberg on 4-6 September 2008. This time the conference will be organized in association with the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law. The organizers have chosen “International Law in a Heterogeneous World” as the main topic of the event. A preliminary programme can be found here. …

Serge Brammertz nominated as succesor of Carla Del Ponte

14/11/2007 – 8:09 pm | Comments Off on Serge Brammertz nominated as succesor of Carla Del Ponte

In July the International Law Observer noted that Serge Brammertz was the probable succesor of Carla Del Ponte as chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY). Today, Le Monde reports that UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has nominated Serge Brammertz for the position. Serge Brammertz had a strong competitor in David Tolbert, deputy chief prosecutor at the ICTY.
Thus, Serge Brammertz will be …

International Law 2.0

12/11/2007 – 8:07 am | Comments Off on International Law 2.0

On his monthly column, ASIL president José E. Alvarez recently wrote about the “Democratization of the Invisible College“. The concept of an Invisible College of International Lawyers was first coined by Oscar Schachter (the late Professor of Columbia University Law School) who saw it as “the active professional community of professors, students, government officials and international civil servants”. According to Alvarez, Schachter’s
“invisible college was simply …

Blog Readability Test – or: what level of education is required to understand International Law Observer?

11/11/2007 – 4:43 pm | Comments Off on Blog Readability Test – or: what level of education is required to understand International Law Observer?

Here is an interesting side note: We at International Law Observer certainly understand it as one of our main objectives to contribute to the exchange of ideas in the academic world. So far so good. But what do we really presuppose or even demand from our readers? What level of education is required to understand the contents of International Law Observer? Well, according to the …

The USA and the Convention on the Law of the Sea

05/11/2007 – 8:49 am | 2 Comments

Will the USA really ratify the UN Convention for the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS)? This question has preoccupied much of the law-related public debate in the USA during the recent days. After the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC) on Wednesday last week (31 October) voted 17 to 4 in support of recommending the Senate to accede to the UNCLOS, the issue seems to have caught …

States need to co-operate more with the International Criminal Court

31/10/2007 – 12:05 am | Comments Off on States need to co-operate more with the International Criminal Court

According to a recent statement of a senior official – ICC Registrar Bruno Cathala -, the International Criminal Court (ICC) needs more co-operation from States. Considering the success of the recent arrest of Germain Katanga and his subsequent transfer to ICC custody (see our previous report) one may wonder, what the actual reason is behind this reminder from the ICC.
According to the ICC Registrar Bruno …

Private Security Companies and immunity from prosecution

26/10/2007 – 9:52 am | Comments Off on Private Security Companies and immunity from prosecution

Thanks to a recent post over at OpinioJuris.com my attention was drawn to the fact that the Iraqi government plans to revoke the immunity from prosecution granted to so-called private security companies operating in the country. This immunity is currently based on CPA (Coalition Provision Authority) Order 17. According to a spokesperson, the Iraqi government „decided to scrap the article pertaining to security companies operating …

New Blog on legal issues surrounding manned aerospace activities

22/10/2007 – 10:59 pm | Comments Off on New Blog on legal issues surrounding manned aerospace activities

Today, we at International Law Observer would like to welcome a new Blog to the blogosphere: The Res Communis – A blog on the legal aspects of human activities using aerospace technologies.
The blog describes itself in the following terms: [The blog] focuses on legal issues that result from manned aerospace activities. This includes remote sensing, air, and space law. The blog is an outreach program administered by the …

War crimes suspect transferred to the ICC

18/10/2007 – 3:19 pm | Comments Off on War crimes suspect transferred to the ICC

The ICC today announced that Germain Katanga, the former senior commander of the Congolese militia group FRPI, was surrendered and transferred to the International Criminal Court (ICC) (general overview of the case).
The Pre-Trial Chamber I of the ICC issued a warrent of arrest already on 2 July 2007, based on the allegation that Mr Katanga played an essential role in the planning and implementation of …

Global Environment, International Peace and International Law – Attempts of harmonization

14/10/2007 – 6:12 am | One Comment

On Friday (12 October 2007) the Norwegian Nobel Committee announced that Al Gore (the former vice president of the USA) and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) will be rewarded with this year’s Nobel Peace Price. The motivation presented by the committee was the following: “for their efforts to build up and disseminate greater knowledge about man-made climate change, and to lay the foundations …

Blog action day

14/10/2007 – 12:18 am | Comments Off on Blog action day

A new initiative has been started to draw attention to the issue of the environment – the Blog Action Day. It is based on the collaboration of the blogging community and its ability to reach a wider audience. The basic idea is that all participating blogs on 15 October will unite to put the important issue of the environment on everyone’s mind. Here is …

Blackwater Sued for Killing Iraqi Civilians

13/10/2007 – 4:48 pm | 2 Comments

Victims filed a claim on 10 October against Blackwater USA, the private military contractor whose heavily armed personnel allegedly opened fire on innocent Iraqi civilians in Nisoor Square in Baghdad on 16 Sept 200. The case was brought today by an injured survivor and three families of men killed in the incident, according to the legal team representing the civilians. The case was brought by …