Friday, April 28, 2017

Conference: 13th Annual Conference of the European Society of International Law

The 13th Annual Conference of the European Society of International Law will take place September 7-9, 2017, in Naples. The theme is: "Global Public Goods, Global Commons and Fundamental Values: The Responses of International Law." The program is here. Early-bird registration ends on April 30. Here's the idea:

The 2017 Annual Conference of the European Society of International Law will explore how international law has responded, or can or should respond, to the fundamental challenge of defining and regulating global public goods, global commons and fundamental values. These concepts, individually and in their interrelationship, present ongoing challenges for an international legal system that, despite all its transformations in recent decades, essentially remains a pluralistic system organised around the principle of state sovereignty.

Global public goods are goods with benefits and/or costs that affect all countries, people, and generations. They include inherently public global goods, such as a healthy climate and the fight against terrorism, and domestic public goods whose global regulation makes every one better off, such as free trade and public health.

Global commons are resources, domains or areas that lie outside the political reach, and jurisdiction, of any single nation state. Traditional examples are outer space, the high seas and Antarctica, but the concept now tends to include intangible global commons such as the human genome or immaterial cultural heritage.

Fundamental values are values that make a universal claim to be shared by all states and peoples across the world. They have a marked political and axiological connotation. Decisions about what should be considered as fundamental values of international society are never beyond controversy. The category of fundamental values certainly includes the protection and promotion of human rights and the right to self-determination, but some would also include values such as human dignity, peace, the protection of the environment, and democracy.

Global public goods, global commons and fundamental values are interlinked above all by the fact that all states have an interest in their protection and promotion. It is also the case that, to varying degrees, long- term protection or regulation of each is beyond the ability of any single state. The three concepts can also overlap conceptually and in practice: particular objectives (e.g. the conservation of fisheries) have both a global public goods and global commons dimension, others (such as the protection of the environment) are both a fundamental value and a global public good, and so on.

While international law has long responded to all three concepts, the challenges posed by their definition and effective regulation remain formidable. The very idea of the pursuit of general interests in these three domains as an aim of international law is recurrently questioned, given that traditional international regimes tend to protect the interests of individual states. This interplay between domestic principles and the general interests of the international community leads to yet further complexities and uncertainties as to where the current regime of international cooperation on these questions really stands. Moreover, what might be included within each category and in what legal form changes over time. Today’s rapid flux of communications and migration of people, alongside social, political, economic and environmental interdependence, mean that, in an increasing number of situations, goods provide benefits and/or costs to all countries, are beyond the reach of any single state, and impact on fundamental values shared by all states. The responses of international law to each of the three phenomena are undergoing continuous transformation and appraisal – what was once a national public good may become a global public good; what was initially a matter of national jurisdiction may later be seen as a global commons, and what were thought of as purely national values may transcend national boundaries.

The 2017 ESIL Annual Conference will explore how international law responds to global public goods, global commons and fundamental values, examining the responses in a wide range of fields. It will discuss which general interests have or have not been deemed to deserve the protection of international law in one or more of these categories, and why; it will also explore the legal foundation of such interests in international law. In addition, the conference will focus on whether and how it is appropriate that international law intervenes to regulate such interests, taking into account the interplay between multiple actors of international law, ranging from states, international and regional organisations and non-state actors. It will explore how states and other actors have used international law to protect general interests, what lessons can be learned from these efforts, and what main challenges still need to be addressed. Looking at international law through the prism of global public goods, global commons and fundamental values also implies an in-depth examination of different substantive regimes, for example those regulating human rights, the protection of the environment, judicial cooperation in criminal matters, the use of force, terrorism, and so on.

Call for Audience: International Law in a Dark Time

The Erik Castrén Institute of International Law and Human Rights and Peking University Institute of International Law Collaboration Project (ECI-PUIIL Project) have issued a call for an audience for a seminar for doctoral students and junior researchers on "International Law in a Dark Time," on May 22-23, 2017, in Helsinki. The seminar will be directed by Anne Orford (Univ. of Melbourne) and Martti Koskenniemi (Univ. of Helsinki). Up to thirty participants may register to be in the audience. Registration is here; the deadline is May 15, 2017. The program is here. Here's the idea:

The Erik Castrén Institute of International Law and Human Rights and Peking University Institute of International Law Collaboration Project (ECI-PUIIL Project) funded by CIMO is pleased to offer a seminar for PhD students and junior researchers to be held at Faculty of Law, University of Helsinki. The purpose of this workshop is to examine the transformations of law at a specific moment in history in which law and lawfulness appear as much part of the problem as the solution.

The background for this workshop is formed by the experience that in the past 25 years optimism about international progress after the end of the Cold War has diminished and law’s role in global governance has come to appear increasingly ambivalent: it has often proven either useless or actually harmful. From an easy acceptance of the ideology of the “rule of law” in the early 1990s, we have come to realise that law comes in many forms and supports very different and often contradictory policies. On the one hand, there has been a massive growth of law in various specialist fields ranging from human rights to the environment, war and security to the economy. At the same time, in many of these fields a sense of a “crisis” has emerged or persists. Sometimes the crisis has been attributed to external phenomena – and law has come to seem inefficient in dealing with them. At other times crisis may seem have been created or exacerbated by the law itself. Despite the “growth” of law in the field of human rights and the environment, huge numbers of people experience daily deprivation and no end can be seen to the degradation of the quality of the environment. Laws enacted to protect the security of human groups are used to discipline and oppress, and economic laws seem powerful to forestall the massive growth of global inequality. In a word, the benefits of the traditional recipe to international problems of “more law” may no longer seem sustainable.

The purpose of the workshop would be to examine law’s increasingly complex role and its often problematic consequences for international politics.

Dannenbaum: The Criminalization of Aggression and Soldiers’ Rights

Tom Dannenbaum (Univ. College London - Law) has posted The Criminalization of Aggression and Soldiers’ Rights (European Journal of International Law, forthcoming). Here's the abstract:
This article identifies the core wrong of criminal aggression to be the entailed legally unjustified killing and human violence and not the violation of sovereignty or states’ rights. Its core contribution is to elaborate two implications of that normative account of the crime. First, soldiers have a right to refuse to fight in criminal wars and they must be recognized as refugees when they flee punishment for engaging in such refusal. Second, those killed or harmed by an aggressor force are the core victims of the crime. As such, they, and not the attacked state, have the primary claim to judicial participation as victims at the International Criminal Court and to the reparations that follow. Those who adhere to the orthodox notion of aggression as a crime against states miss both of these implications. Soldiers seeking asylum when they refuse to fight in aggressive wars are denied on the grounds that, if they were to fight, they would be far removed from the macro wrong against a foreign state, and so should have no difficulty “washing their hands of guilt.” This is misguided. Although there are good reasons for the “leadership element” that protects them from criminal liability for aggression, soldiers perpetrate directly the constituent wrongs of the criminal action and the reasons not to punish them for doing so are not reasons to deny them the right to disobey. Similarly, adherents to the traditional account would grant states the right to participate as victims and claim reparations in aggression prosecutions. This, too, is a mistake. The victims of the wrong that renders aggressive war criminally condemnable are soldiers killed or harmed fighting an aggressor force and collaterally killed or harmed civilians. These are the class members eligible for judicial participation and reparations.

Conference: 10th Annual Toronto Group Conference

Today and tomorrow, April 28-29, 2017, the Toronto Group for the Study of International, Transnational and Comparative Law will hold its tenth annual conference. The program is here. Here's the idea:
On the occasion of the tenth anniversary of the Toronto Group Conference, we ask what the future of international and transnational law could be in resolving divisions within global society. We aim to re-imagine the practice of international and transnational law as, above all, a space for reconciliation, collective action and robust participation – one that responds to and is inclusive of critical, but neglected voices. As a community of young legal scholars from across the globe, we will explore a number of questions that are profoundly relevant to the future of international and transnational law. For example, how can we foster new relationships in international law, while connecting the values, norms and expectations of diverse groups? How can we redress injustices and be forward looking? Is it possible to address unequal power in international law and the exclusion of a variety of voices and stakeholders? Is it possible to maintain self-determination and identity, while finding common ground? And how to ensure the law’s resilience and sustainability, through true participation?

Workshop: Cognitive Sociology, Culture and International Law

Today and tomorrow, April 28-29, 2017, iCourts - Centre of Excellence for International Courts at the University of Copenhagen Faculty of Law will host a workshop on "Cognitive Sociology, Culture and International Law." The program is here. Here's the idea:
The past few decades have seen growth in behavioural approaches in the social sciences. In this new behavioural revolution, cognitive psychology, behavioural economics, and sociologists of culture have all paid increasing attention to the role of cognition, focusing in the main on decision-making, both with regard to everyday routines and in the context of risk and uncertainty. This third workshop on the sociology of international law aims to break open the study of interactions between various cognitive processes and the formation, interpretation and implementation of international law.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

New Issue: Journal of Conflict & Security Law

The latest issue of the Journal of Conflict & Security Law (Vol. 22, no. 1, Spring 2017) is out. Contents include:
  • Andrea Breslin, A Reflection on the Legal Obligation for Third States to Ensure Respect for IHL
  • Ben Saul, Enhancing Civilian Protection by Engaging Non-State Armed Groups under International Humanitarian Law
  • Eva Kassoti, The Normative Status of Unilateral Ad Hoc Commitments by Non-State Armed Actors in Internal Armed Conflicts: International Legal Personality and Lawmaking Capacity Distinguished
  • Tamsin Phillipa Paige, The Impact and Effectiveness of UNCLOS on Counter-piracy Operations
  • Katariina Simonen, The Strong Do What They Can and the Weak Suffer What They Must—But Must They? Fairness as a Prerequisite for Successful Negotiation (Benchmarking the Iran Nuclear Negotiations)
  • Ilaria Zavoli, Peacekeeping in Eastern Ukraine: The Legitimacy of a Request and The Competence of the United Nations General Assembly

Khan: Protecting the Global Fishing Workforce: New International Labor Treaty to Enter into Force

Sabaa A. Khan (Univ. of Eastern Finland - Center for Climate Change, Energy and Environmental Law) has posted an ASIL Insight on Protecting the Global Fishing Workforce: New International Labor Treaty to Enter into Force.

Call for Submissions: The Military Law and the Law of War Review

The Military Law and the Law of War Review / Revue de Droit Militaire et de Droit de la Guerre has issued a call for submissions for its 2016-2017 issue. Here's the call:

The Military Law and the Law of War Review

Call for Papers

The Military Law and the Law of War Review / Revue de Droit Militaire et de Droit de la Guerre is a journal specialised in matters of interest for both civilian and military legal advisors as well as legal scholars and academics. Published since 1962, it is among the oldest publications at the international level in the areas of military/security law and the law of war. For decades, the Review has been an important forum of discussion for scholars and practitioners from all over the world.

The Review is published under the auspices of the International Society for Military Law and the Law of War. It features original and challenging articles, case notes, commentaries of the latest legal developments, as well as book reviews. As a distinct trait, it accepts contributions in six languages: English, French, German, Spanish, Italian and Dutch.

For its 2016-2017 issue (vol. 55/1), the Review’s editorial board welcomes submissions that come within the broader scope of the Review (including military law, law of armed conflict, law on the use of force, as well as international criminal law and human rights law (inasmuch as related to situations of armed conflict)). In particular, the editorial board invites scholars and practitioners to submit articles pertaining to the international law of military operations.

The deadline for submission is 15 June 2017.

Submissions should be sent by e-mail to brussels@ismllw.org and will be subject to double-blind peer review. Articles should normally not be longer than 15.000 words (footnotes included), although longer pieces may exceptionally be considered. Inquiries as to whether a possible submission comes within the scope of the Review can be sent to the abovementioned e-mail address.

Selected papers will be published online on the Review’s website in advance access (in a non-downloadable and non-printable form) as well as on Hein Online following editing and type-setting. The print version of the issue is scheduled to come out in autumn 2017.

Call for Papers: African International Economic Law Network 4th Biennial Conference

The African International Economic Law Network has issued a call for papers for its 4th Biennial Conference, to be held November 8-10, 2017, at Middlesex University Mauritius. The call is here.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Swaine: Kiobel and Extraterritoriality: Here, (Not) There, (Not Even) Everywhere

Edward T. Swaine (George Washington Univ. - Law) has posted Kiobel and Extraterritoriality: Here, (Not) There, (Not Even) Everywhere (Oklahoma Law Review, Vol. 69, p. 23, 2016). Here's the abstract:

The Supreme Court’s decision in Kiobel v. Royal Dutch Petroleum Co. was relentlessly, and unexpectedly, local in character. Notwithstanding the global outlook suggested by the Alien Tort Statute (ATS), which governs civil actions by “an alien” for torts contrary to “the law of nations or a treaty of the United States,” the Court invoked the presumption against extraterritoriality to limit the statute’s reach.

This Article, based on remarks delivered at the University of Oklahoma Law School, puts a heavy emphasis on territoriality — not, it should be stressed, as a matter of normative preference, but purely as a reflection of the Court’s recent cases. It is accordingly inconsistent with some of the more expansive readings of the ATS, though it stops short of Justice Alito’s prescription. If future cases are to depart substantially from territoriality, the better path is not to explore what Kiobel left unresolved, but to revisit what it purported to settle.

Linderfalk: What are the Functions of the General Principles? Good Faith and International Legal Pragmatics

Ulf Linderfalk (Lund Univ. - Law) has posted What are the Functions of the General Principles? Good Faith and International Legal Pragmatics. Here's the abstract:
To assist current efforts of the academic community to develop a fuller understanding of the function of general principles of international law, this article inquires into the operation of the principle of good faith. As argued, first, good faith serves as a principle of international legal pragmatics. It helps to explain the understanding of conduct in much the same way as, say, the requirement that in a verbal utterance, the first singular pronoun “I” be used to refer to the utterer, and a temporal expression such as “now” to the point in time of the utterance. Second, the principle of good faith does not itself presuppose the good of any particular state of affairs. It helps to ensure the comprehension of communicative behaviour on the part of international law-makers, irrespective of the moral or political agenda that they themselves happen to be pursuing. Third, in international law, there are other norms that share the traits of the principle of good faith. They, too, can be characterised as principle of international legal pragmatics.

Poulsen: Politics of Investment Treaty Arbitration

Lauge N. Skovgaard Poulsen (Univ. College London - Political Science) has posted Politics of Investment Treaty Arbitration (in The Oxford Handbook of International Arbitration, Thomas Schultz & Federico Ortino eds., forthcoming). Here's the abstract:
The chapter outlines and contextualises the past and current political drivers and effects of investment treaty arbitration.

Goldmann: Relative Normativity

Matthias Goldmann (Goethe-Universität Frankfurt am Main - Law) has posted Relative Normativity (in Fundamental Concepts of International Law, Jean d’Aspremont & Sahib Singh eds., forthcoming). Here's the abstract:
This paper critically reassesses the notion of relative normativity in international law and the related debate triggered by the emergence of ius cogens and international soft law. Contrary to standard positivist assumptions which treat relative normativity as a pathology, the paper argues that relative normativity has been a consistent feature of international law since its emergence in early modernity. Tracking this development, the paper shows that the rejection of relative normativity is due to the particular political constellation of the formative period of international law around the turn of the 19th to the 20th century with its focus on unfettered state sovereignty. The postwar era, and even more so the era of globalization, saw a relativization of state sovereignty that allowed the re-emergence of relative normativity. It has prompted a theoretical debate, in which attitudes towards relative normativity correlate with general attitudes about globalization and its impact on international law. The paper concludes by arguing that relative normativity is likely to survive even the recent transformations of global governance caused by the more authoritarian forms of government. Efforts to subject relative normativity to the principles of democracy, the rule of law, and human rights are therefore more necessary than ever.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

New Issue: Stanford Journal of International Law

The latest issue of the Stanford Journal of International Law (Vol. 53, no. 1, Winter 2017) is out. Contents include:
  • Adam S. Chilton & Galit A. Sarfaty, The Limitations of Supply Chain Disclosure Regimes
  • Christopher R. Rossi, The Transboundary Dispute Over the Waters of the Silala/Siloli: Legal Vandalism and Goffmanian Metaphor
  • Shruti Rana, The Global Battle Over Copyright Reform: Developing the Rule of Law in the Chinese Business Context

New Volume: Hungarian Yearbook of International Law and European Law

The latest volume of the Hungarian Yearbook of International Law and European Law (2016) is out. Contents include:
  • Part I Thematic Part: Protection of Cultural Property
    • Gábor Kardos, Universality, ProgressiveRealization, EconomicCrises –The ICESR Fifty Years on
    • György Marinkás, Cultural Rights as a Tool of Protecting the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
    • Vanda Vadász, Lessons of Sevso Case – Restitution Challenges of the Illegally Exported Cultural Property
    • Mária Mihály & Henrietta Galambos, Hungary’s Place and Role in the International Legal Protection of Cultural Heritage – ‘Les longs souvenirs font les grands peuples’
    • Rino Büchel, Change Offers Swiss Cultural Property Protection a Window of Opportunity
  • Part II Forum: The Cafeteria Case
    • Ernő Várnay, National Interests in the Common Market – SZÉP Card and Erzsébet Voucher before the European Court of Justice
    • Réka Somssich, The Hungarian Cold Food Voucher Case – A Somewhat Rigorous Approach of the Court on the Interpretation of Free Movement Provisions
  • Part III Developments in International Law
    • Péter Darák, Terrorism and Rule of Law
    • Marcel Szabó, General Principles of Law in the Practice of International Courts and the European Court of Justice
    • Ielyzaveta Lvova, The Concept of Global Constitutionalism as a Road-Trip to Freedom for Local Democracies in Transition Times
    • Zsuzsanna Horváth, Transforming Our World – New Agenda and Goals for Sustainable Development
    • András Huszár, Preliminary Legal Issues in the Historic Paris Climate Agreement
    • Ágnes Bujdos, The ‘Hidden’ Definition of Water Pollution in the UNECE Water Convention
    • Sándor Fülöp, In Fairness to Future Generations –Building Effective Public Participation
    • Attila Pánovics, The Aarhus Convention Model
    • György Andrássy, Article 27 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights – The Wording and Its Implications
    • Veronika Szeghalmi, Private Messages at Work – Strasbourg Court of Human Right’s Judgement in Bărbulescu v. Romania Case
    • Zoltán Tallódi, The Question of Prison Overcrowding as Reflected in the Decisions of the European Court of Human Rights
    • János Tamás Papp, Liability for Third-Party Comments before the European Court of Human Rights – Comparing the Estonian Delfi and the Hungarian Index-MTE Decisions
    • Péter Smuk, The Concept of the European Political Party
    • Lilla Berkes, Did Not Lose Their Public Asset Quality
    • Petra Lea Láncos, Three Models of Minority Media Participation – A Brief Analysis of Language Related Prescriptions in National Media Laws
    • Réka Varga, International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement and Humanitarian Activities for Migrants

Young: Narrative, Metaphor and Human Rights Law: When Rights-Talk Meets Queue-Talk

Katharine Young (Boston College - Law) has posted Narrative, Metaphor and Human Rights Law: When Rights-Talk Meets Queue-Talk (in Narrative, Metaphor and the Law, Mike Hanne & Robert Weisberg eds., forthcoming). Here's the abstract:

Much contemporary legal scholarship on human rights sees the lapses between rhetoric and reality, symbol and substance, and rights-talk and rights-action, as human rights law’s greatest deficiency. That approach, however, fails to acknowledge the power of the human rights vocabulary to change people’s political commitments, and with them, especially in democratic states, the authority, meaning, and ultimately, effectiveness of human rights law. Yet the power of language cuts both way: it is both constitutive and distortive of rights. This chapter, which is part of an edited collection by Mike Hanne and Robert Weisberg, entitled Narrative and Metaphor in Law (forthcoming, 2017), explores how narrative and metaphor provide the literary, cognitive, and cultural frames for events and issues to be understood as part of human rights law. Metaphor, in particular, is understood not simply as an ornament to language, but as a fundamental scheme by which people conceptualize and organize their moral, social, and legal worlds.

With this contribution in mind, this paper examines a metaphor which frequently accompanies rights talk: the metaphor of “the queue”. The queue, or waiting line or wait list, is ubiquitous in modern, especially urban, life. It distributes resources, usually on a first-come, first-served basis, in conditions of scarcity or where simultaneous provision is not possible. For example, surgery wait lists for health care or waiting lines in the emergency room, housing wait lists or the waiting lines for shelters, or visa entry wait lists for immigration, or for deportation, are all pivotal aspects of human rights law configured by a queue. The common experience of participating in other queues, in transport, recreation, or other contexts, helps to explain the metaphor’s resonance.

And yet, the metaphor’s connection with rights provokes disagreement around notions of entitlement. The queue institutionalizes, but also discredits, the political and social reordering compelled by human rights law. By using examples of “queue talk” around the constitutional right to housing in South Africa, the paper examines how the queue metaphor occupies the doctrinal vacuum of the obligation to “progressively realize” certain human rights, particularly economic and social rights, and particularly when positive obligations are at issue. Moreover, it explores how the metaphor exaggerates the state provision of a good or service, rather than the state’s regulatory, or private law, levers of control. In each respect, the queue metaphor reveals severe limits on what human rights law makes possible.

Conference: The United Nations Security Council and the Sea/Le Conseil de sécurité des Nations unies et la mer

On May 4-5, 2017, the Centre de droit international at the Université Jean Moulin Lyon 3 will host a conference on "The United Nations Security Council and the Sea/Le Conseil de sécurité des Nations unies et la mer." The program is here.

Call for Papers: 15° Congresso Brasileiro de Direito Internacional

The Brazilian Academy of International Law / Academia Brasileira de Direito Internacional has issued a call for papers for the 15th Brazilian Congress of International Law / 15° Congresso Brasileiro de Direito Internacional, to be held in Florianópolis, from August 30-September 2, 2017, under the sponsorship of the Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina and the Universidade de São Paulo. The theme is: "International Law and Its Transdisciplinarity." The call is here (English/Português).

Monday, April 24, 2017

Spiro: Citizenship Overreach

Peter J. Spiro (Temple Univ. - Law) has posted Citizenship Overreach (Michigan Journal of International Law, forthcoming). Here's the abstract:

This Article examines international law limitations on the ascription of citizenship in the context of U.S. taxation of non-resident citizens. U.S. citizenship practice is exceptionally generous, extending citizenship to almost all persons in its territory at the moment of birth. At the same time that it is generous at the front end, U.S. citizenship is sticky at the back. Termination of citizenship on the individual’s part involves substantial fees and tax compliance. It is difficult to shed a citizenship one may never have wanted in the first place.

This stickiness would be inconsequential if few costs were associated with the status. But the United States taxes its citizens on a worldwide basis. The 2010 enactment of the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act has ramped up historically lax enforcement and imposes substantial administrative burdens on even middle-earner citizens abroad.

In this frame, U.S. birthright citizenship and expatriation regimes may violate international norms, especially with respect to those "accidental Americans" who departed the United States as children. Even in the context of extremely relaxed historical constraints on state nationality practice, there were acknowledged nineteenth century limitations on the extension of citizenship to individuals with insufficient connection to a state -- citizenship over-claiming, as it were. The article also describes the historical requirement that naturalization be volitional, a norm now appropriately applied in some cases in the context of birthright citizenship.

To the extent the ascription of U.S. citizenship compromises individual rights, there are tax fixes and there are citizenship fixes. Citizenship fixes include opt-in and opt-out mechanisms for birthright citizenship. The better solution may lie in frictionless exit for those with nominal ties to the national community. Though reform is more likely to be accomplished through the tax regime, the moment highlights the over-inclusiveness of U.S. citizenship and the growing salience of international law to citizenship practices.

Call for Papers: ESIL International Economic Law Interest Group Workshop

The International Economic Law Interest Group of the European Society of International Law has issued a call for papers for a workshop on September 6, 2017, in Naples, immediately prior to the ESIL Annual Conference. The call is here.

Pollack: The New, New Sovereigntism (Or, How the Europe Union Became Disenchanted with International Law and Defiantly Protective of Its Domestic Legal Order)

Mark A. Pollack (Temple Univ. - Political Science) has posted The New, New Sovereigntism (Or, How the Europe Union Became Disenchanted with International Law and Defiantly Protective of Its Domestic Legal Order). Here's the abstract:
Over the past several decades, it has become commonplace in both scholarly and political circles to contrast the positions of the US and the European Union EU toward the rule of international law. Critics have argued that the US had abandoned its post-war role as the champion of the international legal order, being instead characterized by a "new sovereigntism" that seeks to protect the US from unwelcome intrusions of international law into the domestic legal order. By contrast, the EU has been seen as inherently committed to the rule of law and a strong international legal order. The aim of this paper is not to attack, much less to debunk, the conventional dichotomy between a scofflaw America one the one hand and an international law-loving Europe on the other. The more limited aim of this paper, rather, is to suggest that European attitudes towards international law may be changing, and that the EU is developing a European variant of the American new sovereigntism, in which a growing number of critics – concentrated primarily, though not only, among the pro-European left and center-left – have raised fundamental procedural and substantive objections to international rules and norms, which they depict as hostile to European laws and values, and against which they champion a defiant resistance. In a growing number of areas of international law, including international trade, economic regulation, food safety, data privacy, and national security, the European center-left has moved towards a sharply critical view of international law, alternatively resisting consent to unwelcome agreements, compliance with unwelcome international judicial decisions, and internalization of international laws perceived to be in tension with domestic EU rules and rights. These changing attitudes towards international law, in turn, have been magnified and translated into policy outcomes through the EU’s “hyper-consensus” political institutions, which have created multiple veto points empowering European critics to defy and deflect the intrusion of unwelcome international legal norms, rules, and agreements.

Elgebeily: The Rule of Law in the United Nations Security Council Decision-Making Process

Sherif Elgebeily (Centre for the Study of International Peace and Security ) has published The Rule of Law in the United Nations Security Council Decision-Making Process: Turning the Focus Inwards (Routledge 2017). Here's the abstract:

The UN Security Council is entrusted under the UN Charter with primary responsibility for the maintenance and restoration of the international peace; it is the only body with the power to authorise military intervention legally and impose international sanctions where it decides. However, its decision-making process has hitherto been obscure and allegations of political bias have been made against the Security Council in its responses to potential international threats. Despite the rule of law featuring on the Security Council’s agenda for over a decade and a UN General Assembly declaration in 2012 establishing that the rule of law should apply internally to the UN, the Security Council has yet to formulate or incorporate a rule of law framework that would govern its decision-making process.

This book explains the necessity of a rule of law framework for the Security Council before analysing existing literature and UN documents on the domestic and international rule of law in search of concepts suitable for transposition to the arena of the Security Council. It emerges with eight core components, which form a bespoke rule of law framework for the Security Council. Against this framework, the Security Council’s decision-making process since the end of the Cold War is meticulously evaluated, illustrating explicitly where and how the rule of law has been undermined or neglected in its behaviour. Ultimately, the book concludes that the Security Council and other bodies are unwilling or unable adequately to regulate the decision-making process against a suitable rule of law framework, and argues that there exists a need for the external regulation of Council practice and judicial review of its decisions.

Lauterpacht Centre Friday Lunchtime Lecture Series for Easter Term 2017

Here's the schedule for the Lauterpacht Centre for International Law's Easter Term 2017 Friday Lunchtime Lectures:
  • April 28, 2017: Wouter G Werner (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam - Law), Screening International Criminal Justice: A Study of Four Documentary Films on the International Criminal Court
  • May 5, 2017: Ola Mestad (Univ. of Oslo - Law), Global governance on the ground: the development and implementation of the OECD Guidance
  • May 12, 2017: Elies van Sliedregt (Leeds Univ. - Law), The Malabo Protocol and the African Court of Justice and Human Rights: model for the future?

Conference: The Geopolitics of International Law: Contemporary Challenges for the Asia-Pacific

The 2017 International Law Association-American Society of International Law Asia-Pacific Research Forum, hosted by the Chinese (Taiwan) Society of International Law, will take place May 19-20, in Taipei. The theme of the Research Forum is: "The Geopolitics of International Law: Contemporary Challenges for the Asia-Pacific." The program is here.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Discussion: Supreme Law of the Land? Debating the Contemporary Effects of Treaties Within the United States Legal System

On April 27, 2017, Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP will host a discussion in its London office on "Supreme Law of the Land? Debating the Contemporary Effects of Treaties Within the United States Legal System." The program is here.