- The members of the G8 are meeting in Northern Ireland this week. The meeting takes place amidst revelations that US and UK intelligence agencies spied on their allies during G20 meetings in London in 2009.
- The latest round of climate change talks concluded in Bonn on Friday. Earth Negotiations Bulletin has a detailed summary here.
- The Armed Groups and International Law Blog has published its roundup of recent scholarship on issues relating to armed groups or non-international armed conflict.
- A car bomb detonated in a Damascus suburb, killing at least 20.
- Hassan Rouhani has unexpectedly won the Iranian presidential election in the first round.
- Julian Assange is confident that a deal will be reached between the UK and Ecuador to resolve his current situation.
- Chen Guangcheng, the Chinese activist who made a high-profile escape to the US Embassy in Beijing last year, has accused NYU of bowing to Chinese pressure to end his fellowship. NYU has denied the allegations.
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Calls for Papers
- The Antonio Cassese Initiative for Justice, Peace and Humanity is inviting students and young professionals born after July 1, 1983 to hand in an abstract on a subject dealing with new perspectives in international criminal law. The abstract should be submitted by July 1, 2013 and should be limited to 400 words. Five abstracts will be selected, setting out the most innovative perspectives. The authors of these abstracts will be invited to elaborate upon their ideas in a paper of around 8000 words. From these papers, the best one will be awarded with the Cassese Initiative Prize, receive a collection of books from OUP and his/her paper will be submitted for publication in the Journal of International Criminal Justice. More information is here.
- The University of Seville (Spain) will hold an international conference on The Implementation of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights in Spain that will take place on 4-6 November 2013. The conference is now calling for paper proposals related to the themes of the conference (more information here).
- The World Trade Institute (WTI) of the University of Bern invites the submission of papers and abstracts for its conference on November 8, 2013, entitled “The Role of the State in Investor-State Arbitration”. The conference will examine the development of the concept of the “State” in a field that currently presents an increasing number of controversial disputes: Investor-State Arbitration. More information is here.
- To commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the Signing of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations, the Southern Illinois University Law Journal is pursuing a Fall 2013 “paper” symposium related to the topic. For the symposium, the Journal is soliciting articles from experts in the field regarding the past and/or future of the VCCR and consular relations law. Final drafts of approximately twenty pages are requested by the end of August. If you are interested in submitting an article for publication, please contact the Journal editors, Jessica Sarff or Dean Davis, for additional details.
- The ABA Section of Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice is organizing the 8th Annual Homeland Security Law Institute on June 19-21, 2013, at the Capital Hilton Hotel in Washington DC. More information is here.
- The Faculty of Law, University of Copenhagen, is seeking applications for a position as professor of law to be affiliated with iCourts – The Danish National Research Foundation´s Centre of Excellence for International Courts, which is a research centre at the Faculty of Law. More information is here.
Last week’s post can be found here. If you would like to post an announcement on Opinio Juris, please contact us.
This week on Opinio Juris, there was a lot of news to cover with NSA leak and the US administration’s decision to arm Syrian rebels. On the first, Julian thought Hong Kong was a dumb choice of refuge for the NSA leaker. Chris dug deeper into domestic data-mining with earlier stories about the NSA’s activities. Peter addressed the position of expat Americans in PRISM. Further on cyber-issues, Duncan highlighted Japan’s new Cybersecurity Strategy.
On the second bit of news, Julian argued why the “red line” crossed by Syria is meaningless in terms of the legal framework restricting US intervention in Syria. Neomi Rao contributed a guest post on the implications of the Syria crisis for the R2P doctrine. As announced by Julian here, Neomi will continue to blog on R2P next week, so stay tuned!
Other internationally relevant news can be found in the weekday news wraps.
First in string of guest posts, Michael Lewis argued that Pakistan has withdrawn its consent to US drone strikes in its territory. James Stewart then responded to Kevin’s defence last week of the ICTY’s new “specific direction” standard for aiding and abetting. Finally, Elizabeth Wilson returned to the discussion of Kiobel to refute Samuel Moyn’s argument in his ForeignAffairs post, by delving into the historical background of anti-Shell protests in Ogoniland.
In other posts, Duncan pointed to a recent article by Jean Galbraith on the treaty-implementing power of Congress in historical practice, and Kristen reported back from a conference in Leiden on privileges and immunities of international organizations. If this inspires you to write or to attend a conference, check out this week’s listing of calls for papers and events here.
Have a nice weekend (especially Jessica who has a big day today!)
- In an interview with the South China Morning Post, Edward Snowden has revealed that the US has engaged in hacking activities against Hong Kong and China.
- In a report released yesterday to mark World Day Against Child Labor, the ILO estimated that around 10 million children worldwide are working in domestic labour.
- Turkey’s crackdown in Taksim Square may not be without consequences for its membership negotiations with the EU.
- The NYTimes has an op-ed about the British government’s decision to compensate over 5000 Kenyans for the torture and abuse they suffered during the Mau Mau Rebellion in the 1950s.
- France has expressed its determination to include a cultural exception in the negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. Meanwhile, cows and dairy products are seen as the biggest obstacle in the trade negotiations between the EU and Canada.
- The Pre-Trial Chamber I has rejected Laurent Gbagbo’s challenge to the admissibility of the case against him, due to insufficient evidence that he is being actively prosecuted in Côte d’Ivoire.
- EU officials have sent a “please explain” to the US over the private information of European citizens collected under the PRISM program.
- Meanwhile, Google, Facebook and Microsoft have asked the US government for permission to release aggregate data on the information requests they receive, to improve transparency.
- Syrian rebels have reportedly killed dozens of Shiite pro-government fighters in retaliation for the killing of four rebels. With tensions increasing in the region, the UN is forced to look for new peacekeepers after Austria decided to pull out its troops over the next four weeks.
- The EU is likely to escalate its trade disputes with China another notch, as it plans to join Japan’s earlier complaint against Chinese anti-dumping duties on steel tubes.
- The Taliban has carried out a second deadly attack in Kabul in as many days, this time targeting the Supreme Court.
- The WTO TRIPS Council has reportedly decided to extend the transition period for least developing countries until 2021.
- The United States may decide early this week to provide armed assistance to Syrian rebels. Israel’s PM Netanyahu has made clear that Israel refuses to get involved in this discussion.
- Turkish riot police have moved into Taksim Square to remove anti-government protesters.
- A Kenyan court has imposed prison sentences of five years on nine Somali nationals accused of piracy in the Gulf of Aden.
- EU officials have been critical of Special Rapporteur Falk when he presented his report on Israel at the UNHRC in Geneva.
- As more revelations about the NSA’s surveillance are in the pipeline, Ed Snowden’s current whereabouts are unknown.
- Ethiopia is being advised to take Egypt to the ICJ to secure rights to dam the Nile.
- During their talks over the weekend, President Xi Jinping and President Obama reached agreement on North Korea and on curbing HFC emissions, but didn’t reach agreement on industrial cyber-espionage.
- Israel has accused Iran and its Palestinian and Lebanese allies of wide-scale cyber attacks on vital national infrastructure.
- Ed Snowden, the NSA/PRISM whistleblower has revealed his identity in an interview with The Guardian, which has live updates here. Meanwhile, Forbes and The Atlantic both whether he can be extradited to the US by Hong Kong where he is currently in hiding.
- Afghan security forces have fought off an attack by Taliban militants near Kabul airport.
- For the first time in over two years, North and South Korean diplomats have held marathon talks to prepare for ministerial talks.
- Australia’s Maritime Safety Authority has called off search operations for survivors after a boat carrying around 55 asylum seekers capsized near Christmas Island.
Calls for Papers
- The American Society of International Law’s International Economic Law Interest Group (ASIL IEcLIG) is pleased to issue a Call for Proposals for its inaugural Junior Scholars Research Forum, to be held at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, in Philadelphia, on November 22, 2013. The deadline for receipt of proposals is June 25th, 2013 and more information can be found here.
- On November 14–15, 2013, the University of Michigan Law School will host the Second Annual ASIL–ESIL–Rechtskulturen Workshop on International Legal Theory. This year’s theme is ‘Politics and Principle in International Legal Theory’. The deadline for the submission for abstracts is July 21, 2013. More information is available here.
- The Faculty of Law, University of Ljubljana is organizing an international scientific conference entitled Second Contemporary Challenges of International Environmental Law Conference. The conference will be held on June 5-6, 2014. Abstracts are due by September 5, 2013. You can find the call for papers here.
- The Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (IALS), School of Advanced Study at the University of London is pleased to announce its inaugural IALS Student Law Review and invites applicants to submit their papers. The IALS Student Law Review will be an open-access journal publishing scholarly articles or developing work format and will focus on legal studies within the main expertise of IALS. Contributions from all areas of the law are welcomed. More information about the Journal and the call for papers can be found here.
- The New Journal of European Criminal Law has issued a call for papers on Fundamental Rights and Penal Law in the Wake of Lisbon. It welcomes contributions on all aspects of the protection of fundamental rights within the Lisbon framework, with a particular focus on criminal law. Contributions, of maximum 12000 words (footnotes included, abstract and five keywords excluded), should be sent to irene [dot] wieczorek [at] vub [dot] ac [dot] be by September 1, 2013.
On June 17, 2013 from 12.00pm – 2.00pm the American Society of International Law will host U.S. Department of State Assistant Secretary for International Security and Nonproliferation Thomas Countryman and other distinguished panelists for an educational event discussing domestic and international implications of the Arms Trade Treaty, challenges to the implementation of the treaty and its international humanitarian law aspects. More information is here.
- ALMA and the Radzyner School of Law of the Interdisciplinary Center (IDC) Herzliya would like to invite you to the next session of the Joint International Humanitarian Law Forum, on June 19, 2013. This month they host Prof. Eugene Kontorovich to discuss his new article “Jurisdiction over Israeli Settlement Activity in the International Criminal Court” and Dr. Ben Clarke to present his new article “Arming drones for law enforcement: challenges and opportunities for the protection of human life”. More information is here.
- Our friends at OUPblog wanted to highlight a recent blog post by Gina Heathcote: Thinking gender and speaking international law.
Last week’s post can be found here. If you would like to post an announcement on Opinio Juris, please contact us.
This week on Opinio Juris, Kevin analyzed the ICC’s Pre-Trial Chamber’s rejection of Libya’s admissibility challenge. He examined the PTC’s analysis of Libya’s inability to prosecute, and expressed surprise that Libya’s failure to provide Saif with defence counsel was evidence of its “inability” instead of “unwillingness”. If you find yourself in Johannesburg next week, you can hear more from Kevin on the admissibility challenge during a lunchtime lecture at the Open Society Initiative for Southern Africa.
In other ICC news, Jennifer Trahan argued that Germany’s ratification of the Kampala Amendment on the Crime of Aggression was a significant step.
Peter was less impressed by the US’ excuse not to attend the signing ceremony of the UN Arms Trade Treaty.
Kevin discussed recent ICTY developments, and his arguments why the ICTY’s “specifically directed” requirement is justified attracted a lot of comments.
Chris pointed out that Geoff Corn, Laurie Blank, Christopher Jenks, and Eric Talbot Jensen have published their full length article on the question of whether a “least harmful means” rule exists in the Law of Armed Conflict. He also posted about the approaching deadline for AJIL‘s Agora on “Transnational Human Rights Litigation after Kiobel“. Other events and announcements can be found here. Finally, you can find our roundups of the daily news here.
Have a nice weekend!
- South Korea has agreed to negotiate with North Korea on the reopening of a joint industrial park that was closed in April after rising tensions.
- The ICC Prosecutor has reported to the UN Security Council on the situation in Darfur.
- The EU Counter-Terrorism Co-ordinator wants member states to do more to restrict their citizens travelling to Syria to fight with extremist groups.
- Syrian rebels have seized the only border crossing between Syria and Israel on the Golan Heights.
- The IMF has issued a report admitting that it made mistakes in Greece, but also shifting some of the blame to other eurozone states.
- According to French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius, forensic examination has shown that the Syrian regime used sarin gas against the rebels. He added that all options are now on the table regarding the response to the situation in Syria.
- Syrian troops, assisted by Hezbollah militia, have seized control of the strategic city of Qusair.
- The US International Trade Commission has sided with Samsung in its ongoing patent fight against Apple; this could see certain types of iPads and iPhones banned from import and sale in the US.
- An Egyptian court has handed out prison sentences of up to five years to 43 pro-democracy NGO workers, including 16 Americans.
- Environmental NGOs have released a report accusing Joseph Kony and his militia of poaching elephants for cash and have called upon governments, particularly in Asia, to do more to combat the illegal trade in ivory.
- The EU Trade Commissioner, Karel De Gucht, has imposed a 12% import duty on Chinese solar panel products that will increase to an average of 47% unless a solution is negotiated within 60 days. China has already responded by announcing an investigation into EU wine trading subsidies.
- Sixty-three states have signed the UN Arms Trade Treaty on the first day that is was open for signature, and at least three more are expected to do so in the next few days. The US will ratify once all official translations have been completed.
- The head of the IAEA has expressed his frustration about the lack of progress in nuclear talks with Iran.
- Ecuador’s Foreign Minister has announced on Twitter that he will meet with his UK counterpart in a fortnight to discuss the situation of Julian Assange.
- The Trial Chamber of the ICC has set September 10 as the new start date for the trial of William Samoei Ruto and Joshua Arap Sang.
- The European Commission will recommend Latvia for admission to the euro zone from the start of 2014.
- Today marks the 24th anniversary of the crackdown on the Tien An Men square. The NYTimes analyzes the impact it had on the careers of the current group of Chinese leaders.
- IATA, the International Air Transport Association, has passed a resolution calling on governments to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from aviation from 2020 onwards, but environmental groups are not convinced.