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Weekly News Wrap: Tuesday, June 2, 2015

by Jessica Dorsey

Africa

Middle East and Northern Africa

Asia

Europe

  • Greece’s cash-strapped government has failed to deliver on a promise to reach an agreement with rescue lenders over the weekend.
  • An ally of German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Monday it would be unrealistic for British Prime Minister David Cameron to expect to achieve changes to European Union treaties before the country holds a referendum on its membership of the bloc.
  • A separatist conflict in eastern Ukraine is revealing increasing evidence, but not yet conclusive legal proof, of Russian state involvement, senior United Nations human rights officials said on Monday.
  • More than 5,000 migrants on their way to Europe have been saved from boats in distress in the Mediterranean since Friday, according to EU authorities, as the corpses of 17 migrants have been brought ashore in Sicily aboard an Italian naval vessel.
  • Russia has imposed an entry ban on 89 European politicians and military leaders, according to a list seen by Reuters, a move that has angered Europe and worsened its standoff with the West over Moscow’s role in the Ukraine conflict.

Americas

  • US President Barack Obama has said that Myanmar needed to take seriously the issue of how it treats the Rohingya people, if it wanted to be successful in its transition to a democracy.
  • U.S.-led forces targeted Islamic State militants in Syria with 13 air strikes from Sunday morning through Monday morning and conducted another 10 strikes against the group in Iraq, the U.S. military said on Monday.

Oceania

  • The leader of Australia’s opposition Labor Party introduced a bill to legalize same-sex marriage on Monday, adding the backing of a major party to growing public support for the issue after last month’s landmark ‘yes’ vote in Ireland.

UN/World

  • The United Nations said it would be forced to slash or shut down almost half its aid operations in Iraq without an immediate injection of new funds, at a time when a humanitarian crisis triggered by Islamic State insurgents is intensifying.
  • Governments must address human trafficking and slavery in a global development pact later this year, Nobel Peace Laureate Kailash Satyarthi said on Monday, warning that the credibility of humanity was at stake if countries failed to deliver.
http://opiniojuris.org/2015/06/02/weekly-news-wrap-tuesday-june-2-2015/
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Weekend Roundup: May 17-31, 2015

by Jessica Dorsey

Over the last two weeks at Opinio Juris, we’ve seen several contributions. Our regular bloggers covered a number of recent developments such as Deborah’s recent post, cross-posted on Just Security, on the D.C. district court’s considering the habeas petition of Guantanamo detainee Mukhtar Yahia Naji al Warafi, and the concept of “active hostilities.” On a related note, Jens covered the nature and scope of the conflict in Afghanistan.

Kristen pointed out that the ILC has now appointed a special rapporteur on jus cogens and also highlighted two recent reports on the ILC website, the first on crimes against humanity and the second on the identification of customary international law.

Julian also weighed in with a couple of posts, the first calling on the world’s media to realize that the US is not challenging China’s territorial claims in the South China Sea (yet) and the second was to point out his new article on Argentina’s sovereign debt crisis at University of Pennsylvania Journal of International Law, entitled: “Don’t Cry for Sovereign Debtors: Why Argentina’s Defeat in U.S. Courts Does Not Justify a Sovereign Debt Treaty.”

Kevin posted on Regulation 55 of the Rome Statute in the context of the Gbagbo proceedings and what he terms the irrelevance of the confirmation hearing. He also posted on when the left shoots itself in the foot (IHL version).

We had two guest contributions in the last two weeks. The first, from Rick Lines, Damon Barrett and Patrick Gallahue was entitled: The Death Penalty for Drug Offences: ‘Asian Values’ or Drug Treaty Influence? Marina Aksenova posted on Five Questions on the Colombian Sentencing Practice and the Principle of Complementarity under the Rome Statute.

Finally, I wrapped up the news and posted on the events and announcements.

Thanks to our guest contributors and to you for following us on Opinio Juris. Have a great weekend!

http://opiniojuris.org/2015/05/31/weekend-roundup-may-17-31-2015/
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Weekly News Wrap: Monday, May 25, 2015

by Jessica Dorsey

Africa

Middle East and Northern Africa

Asia

Europe

Americas

Oceania

UN/World

http://opiniojuris.org/2015/05/25/weekly-news-wrap-monday-may-25-2015/
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Weekend Roundup: May 10-16, 2015

by Jessica Dorsey

This week on Opinio Juris, Duncan posted his thoughts on the fog of technology and international law with respect to drone strikes and Kevin defended (!) Jeb Bush for his somewhat botched answer to Fox News’ Megyn Kelly about the Iraq war.

We had three great guest posts. The first, garnering a large amount of discussion, was from Eugene Kontorovich on Iran’s relief ship and the blockade of Yemen. Our second came from Emma Irving, highlighting the news this week that Mathieu Ngudjolo Chiu, acquitted by the ICC, was sent packing from the Netherlands back to the DRC without asylum, despite the risk he claims he faces in the DRC. Finally, Rishi Gulati weighed in on the recent case of Anders Kompass, the senior UN official who leaked an internal UN report on sexual abuse by UN staff in the Central African Republic to the French authorities, and gave some insights into the UN’s internal justice system.

We’ve announced our third annual Emerging Voices symposium–abstracts are due by 31 May 2015 and I rounded up the news here and the events of the week here.

Thanks for following us and have a great weekend!

http://opiniojuris.org/2015/05/16/weekend-roundup-may-10-16-2015/
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Weekly News Wrap: Monday, May 11, 2015

by Jessica Dorsey

Africa

Middle East and Northern Africa

Asia

Europe

Americas

  • The United States on Friday described as horrifying accusations of sexual abuse of children by French and African troops in Central African Republic, and called for a separate inquiry into how the United Nations handled the allegations.
  • The European Union and the United States are close to completing negotiations on a deal protecting personal data shared for law enforcement purposes such as terrorism investigations, three people familiar with the matter said.
  • Omar Khadr, a Canadian who was once the youngest prisoner held on terror charges at Guantanamo Bay, was released on bail from an Alberta prison Thursday while he appeals a murder conviction by a U.S. military tribunal.

Oceania

  • Australian police said on Saturday they had thwarted an imminent terror attack after discovering explosives at a Melbourne home and arresting a 17-year-old boy, in the latest example of the threat posed by radicalized teenagers in the country.

UN/World

http://opiniojuris.org/2015/05/11/weekly-news-wrap-monday-may-11-2015/
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Weekend Roundup: April 25-May 9, 2015

by Jessica Dorsey

The blog saw quite some discussion over the last two weeks.

As Julian was avoiding grading exams, he posted about Helmerich & Payne v. Venezuela, where the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit held that “domestic takings” can violate international law. He also covered the Sea Shepherd petition for certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court and how Russia, in lecturing the EU in international law, threatened to veto the EU’s attempt for authorization of force against traffickers in Libya from the Security Council. Additionally, Julian posed the question of whether investor-State arbitration weakens the rule of law in reference to the ongoing discussion about the TPP and TTIP and urged us to listen to President Obama rather than candidate Obama when it comes to unilateral presidential war powers, in light of a panel on which he was recently a speaker.

Kevin pointed out Darryl Robinson’s must-read new article on the ICC–“Inescapable Dyads: Why the ICC Cannot Win,” which Cambridge University Press has made available to our readers for free until the end of October 2015. He also continued the discussion on Harold Koh’s appointment at NYU by highlighting Human Rights First’s Elisa Massimino’s position (with which he agrees) defending Koh and highlighted Breaking the Silence’s recent report on Operation Protective Edge.

We had three guest posts. The first, from Sondre Torp Helmersen and Niccolò Ridi, discussed whether there was a case for destroying the smugglers’ boats in the crisis in the Mediterranean and the second, from Elisa Freiburg, analyzed Stephen Preston’s recent speech on “The Legal Framework for the United States’ Use of Military Force since 9/11″ at the ASIL Annual Meeting, calling it old wine in new bottles. Finally, Stuart Ford made the case that the complexity of international trials is necessary.

To round it all off, I wrapped up the news here and here, and listed a few events and announcements here. Have a great weekend!

http://opiniojuris.org/2015/05/10/weekend-roundup-april-25-may-9-2015/
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Weekly News Wrap: Monday, May 4, 2015

by Jessica Dorsey

Africa

Middle East and Northern Africa

Asia

Europe

Americas

Oceania

UN/World

  • Key infrastructure in war-torn Yemen, including water supplies, health services and telecommunications, are on the verge of breaking down due to a major fuel shortage, a United Nations humanitarian official has warned.
http://opiniojuris.org/2015/05/04/weekly-news-wrap-monday-may-4-2015/
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Weekly News Wrap: Tuesday, April 28, 2015

by Jessica Dorsey

Africa

Middle East and Northern Africa

  • Israel fired on seven United Nations schools during the 2014 Gaza war, killing 44 Palestinians who had sought shelter at some sites, while Palestinian militants hid weapons and launched attacks from several empty U.N. schools, a U.N. inquiry found.
  • The humanitarian situation in Yemen has become catastrophic, relief officials said on Monday, as Saudi-led aircraft pounded Iran-allied Houthi militiamen and rebel army units for a second day, dashing hopes for a pause in fighting to let aid in.
  • Israel invited bids on Monday to construct 77 new homes in two settlements on occupied land in East Jerusalem, drawing a swift Palestinian condemnation.

Asia

Europe

Americas

Oceania

  • Australian ties with Indonesia have become strained after nine drug traffickers met their families for what could be the final time at an Indonesian maximum security prison on Tuesday, as Jakarta rejected international pleas for clemency and ordered their executions to proceed, possibly within hours.

UN/World

http://opiniojuris.org/2015/04/28/weekly-news-wrap-tuesday-april-28-2015/
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Weekend Roundup: April 11-25, 2015

by Jessica Dorsey

The last two weeks of posts at Opinio Juris have seen several items from Julian, including on his favorite treaty reservation ever in the Hague Child Support Treaty and more on the HCST and the role of US states here. He also asked the burning question of whether the new “Bipartisan Trade Priorities and Accountability Act”  violate the U.S. Constitution’s bicameralism and presentment requirements as stated by the U.S. Supreme Court in INS v. Chadha?

Kristen highlighted the new report entitled “Nuclear Weapons: the State of Play 2015” ahead of the upcoming NPT review conference, while Kevin weighed with his thoughts on the current petition at NYU to keep Harold Koh from teaching human rights (here and here).

We featured two guest posts, the first from William S. Dodge discussing whether the Alien Tort Statute is headed back to the US Supreme Court and the second from Natia Kalandarishvili-Mueller on Russia’s treaties with Abkhazia and South Ossetia, Georgia.

I wrapped up the news (here and here), offered the Events and Announcements here, and An did so here.

Thanks for following us on Opinio Juris and have a fantastic weekend!

http://opiniojuris.org/2015/04/25/weekend-roundup-april-11-24-2015/
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Weekly News Wrap: Monday, April 20, 2015

by Jessica Dorsey

Africa

Middle East and Northern Africa

Asia

Europe

Americas

  • Poland has summoned the United States’ ambassador in Warsaw over an article written by a top U.S. intelligence official on Poland’s alleged responsibility for the Holocaust during World War Two, a foreign ministry spokesman said on Sunday.
  • After months of positive progress, the two and a half-year-old peace process in Colombia between the government and rebel group the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) is in crisis once again.

Oceania

UN/World

http://opiniojuris.org/2015/04/20/weekly-news-wrap-monday-april-20-2015/
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Weekly News Wrap: Monday, April 13, 2015

by Jessica Dorsey

Your weekly selection of international law and international relations headlines from around the world:

Africa

Middle East and Northern Africa

Asia

Europe

Americas

  • In the first meeting of its kind in nearly 60 years, U.S. President Barack Obama and Cuban leader Raul Castro sat down together for over an hour on Saturday at a regional summit in Panama, moving a step closer to restoring diplomatic ties.
  • As the United States and Iran come closer to a historic nuclear deal, many U.S. states are likely to stick with their own sanctions on Iran that could complicate any warming of relations between the long-time foes.
  • U.S.-led forces targeted Islamic State militants in Syria with three air strikes from Saturday to Sunday morning, and also conducted 10 air strikes in Iraq, the U.S. military said.
  • A U.S. federal judge on Friday denied a last-minute request by four U.S. former Blackwater guards convicted in the massacre of 14 unarmed Iraqis in 2007 to have their sentencing postponed, and said it will go ahead as planned on Monday.

Oceania

UN/World

http://opiniojuris.org/2015/04/13/weekly-news-wrap-monday-april-13-2015/
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Weekend Roundup: April 4-10, 2015

by Jessica Dorsey

This week on Opinio Juris, we hosted a Book Symposium on Interpretation in International Law. The Symposium was introduced by Daniel Peat and Matthew Windsor who offered the framework and context of the book in describing their introductory chapter (available here), explaining that the idea of interpretation in their work centers around the metaphor of a game, with each of the authors contributing their thoughts on elements of that game.

In the next post, our own Duncan examined the object of the game of interpretation in terms of its existential function. Then, on Tuesday, Michael Waibel analyzed the players of the game by discussing the nature of interpretive and epistemic communities in international law. Wednesday, Julian Arato confronted the paradox that, despite the unity and universality of the VCLT rules, there is a practice of affording some treaties differential treatment in the process of interpretation. Thursday, Fuad Zarbiyev characterized the interpretive method of textualism in strategic terms, revealing the historical contingencies that led to it being regarded as sacrosanct in international law. And finally on Friday, Philip Allott’s contribution (emblematic of the aims of the book) reflected on ways to promote critical and open-minded reflection on interpretive practices and processes in international law.

We had two guest posts, one from John Louth who discussed how many international law books are published each year, and one from Gabor Rona, who addressed the recent holding Maldonado v. Holder as it pertains to the US’ obligations under the Convention Against Torture.

Kevin offered his thoughts on the advantage for Palestine of a slow preliminary examination with respect to Palestinian statehood and the recent petition to bar Harold Koh from teaching human rights at NYU and Roger highlighted a debate amongst scholars on the investment arbitration chapter in the TPP and TTIP.

I posted the news and events and announcements.

Thanks very much to the contributing authors of Interpretation in International Law as well as our guest contributors and to you for following us on Opinio Juris. Have a great weekend!

http://opiniojuris.org/2015/04/11/weekend-roundup-april-4-10-2015/
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