Middle East

[Solon Solomon is a Lecturer in the Division of Public and International Law at Brunel University London School of Law.] The last few days have seen a renewed legal interest in both sides of the Atlantic concerning the legality of the Israeli settlements. On November 12, the European Union’s court, the ECJ, held that products coming from these settlements must be labelled accordingly....

I've been meaning to write for a while now about Stefan Talmon's brilliant new article for the Chinese Journal of International Law, which is entitled "The United States under President Trump: Gravedigger of International Law." It's rare you see an international lawyer of Talmon's eminence and care give an article such a provocative title, so you know he must be...

On October 22, Jay Sekulow -- best known as one of Trump's lawyers -- filed a request to submit observations concerning the Afghanistan appeal on behalf of the European Centre for Law & Justice (ECLJ), the European branch of the American Center for Law & Justice (ACLJ), an ultra-right NGO. The Appeals Chamber granted the request on October 24, despite...

[Jeremie Bracka is a  Post-Doctoral Transitional Justice Fellow at the Hebrew University Minerva Center for Human Rights Law (Jerusalem) and currently works at the International Legal Forum (Tel Aviv).] Background On 2 September 2019, the Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Court (ICC) rejected the Prosecutor’s appeal against the decision of the Pre-Trial Chamber (PTC) I on the “Application for Judicial Review by the Government...

[Ralph Janik teaches international law at the University of Vienna, Webster University Vienna, and the University of Rostock. He specializes in the interplay of international law and international relations. Twitter: @RalphJanik] A couple of days ago the research services of Germany’s parliament (the Bundestag) published an expert opinion on the legal aspects of Turkey’s Syria invasion. Its principal findings are clear: “Operation Peace Spring”...

I have seen a number of suggestions recently in the media that Turkey's invasion of Syria could lead to NATO being dragged into the conflict as a result of Art. 5 of the NATO treaty. Art. 5 provides, in relevant part, as follows: The Parties agree that an armed attack against one or more of them in Europe or North America...

In the late hours of 6 October 2019, the White House announced the withdrawal of US forces from northeastern Syria after a telephone call between US President Donald Trump and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The announcement shocked defense and intelligence officials and drew rare criticism from Republican lawmakers, who were not consulted before Trump’s decision and who viewed the withdrawal of US...

A couple of weeks ago, a group of Yezidi women kidnapped, enslaved, and raped by the Islamic State (IS) lost what could have been a landmark case at the New South Wales Civil and Administrative Tribunal. The women sought damages from an Australian-born IS fighter, Khaled Sharrouf, under the terms of New South Wales' victim compensation scheme. Sharrouf himself is...

I am quoted in a long article by Ali Younes for Al Jazeera about a new communication to the ICC asking it to investigate the murder of Jamal Khashoggi, which was committed one year ago today. The communication advances two theories for why the Court has or could have jurisdiction over Khashoggi's murder. The article quotes me responding to one:...

As most readers will know by now, Pre-Trial Chamber II has partially granted the OTP's request for leave to appeal the PTC's refusal to authorize the Afghanistan investigation. Eulogies for the investigation are thus premature. A few thoughts on the PTC's decision follow. To begin with, it remains scandalous that it took the PTC this long to certify the appeal. The...

The irreplaceable Carmi Lecker called my attention yesterday to a proposal by Switzerland to deem the intentional starvation of civilians a war crime in non-international armed conflict (NIAC). At present, it is only a war crime in international armed conflict (IAC) -- Art. 8(2)(b)(xxv) of the Rome Statute. Here is the text of the proposal: Add to article 8, paragraph 2...

[Victor Kattan is a Senior Research Fellow of the Middle East Institute at the National University of Singapore where he heads the Transsystemic Law Cluster. He is also an Associate Fellow of NUS Law. ] Steven Kay QC and Joshua Kern’s rebuttal to my critique of their Article 15 Communication to the Office of the Prosecutor (“OTP”) of the International Criminal Court (“ICC”) (see here and here) is an...