Saturday, August 18, 2018

Wheatley: Explaining Change in the United Nations System: The Curious Status of UN Security Council Resolution 80 (1950)

Steven Wheatley (Lancaster Univ. - Law) has published Explaining Change in the United Nations System: The Curious Status of UN Security Council Resolution 80 (1950) (in Complexity Theory & Law: Mapping an Emergent Jurisprudence, Jamie Murray, Thomas Webb, & Steven Wheatley eds., 2018). Here's the abstract:
This chapter looks to make sense of the paradox of change in the United Nations, whereby an alteration in the behaviours of the Member States can modify the rules of the Organization that bind the same Members. By looking to complexity theory, it shows how we can think of the UN ‘system’ as the emergent property of the actions and interactions of the Member States, evolving as they respond to new information about events in the outside world or the unexpected actions of another State. The work takes as its case study the amendment of the rules for voting in the Security Council that followed the ‘empty chair’ policy assumed by the USSR in 1950. Whilst an evolution in the plain meaning of Charter provisions can be explained by the role of subsequent practice in the interpretation of treaties, there remains the problem of the status of the first resolution adopted under any ‘new’ procedure, in this case Security Council Resolution 80 (1950), which called on the governments of India and Pakistan to make immediate arrangements for the demilitarization of Jammu and Kashmir. The contention is that, by thinking of the United Nations Organization as a complex system of regulatory authority, we can make sense of the change in the procedural rules of the Security Council and explain how an innovation in practice can establish a new rule of behaviour. The key is that change is observed within a temporal frame, which also changes over time.

Conference: VII Colloquium of the International Association of the Law of the Sea

The seventh colloquium of the Association Internationale du Droit de la Mer / International Association of the Law of the Sea will take place September 20-21, 2018, in Lisbon. The theme is: "Les défis globales et le droit de la mer / Global Challenges and the Law of the Sea." The program is here.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Call for Papers: Beyond TTIP: A new season for EU FTAs?

The King’s College London Centre of European Law has issued a call for papers for a young researchers workshop on "Beyond TTIP: A new season for EU FTAs?," to be held October 17-20, 2018. The call is here.

Call for Submissions: Journal of Territorial and Maritime Studies

The Journal of Territorial and Maritime Studies has issued a call for submissions for its forthcoming issue. Here's the call:

JTMS Winter/Spring 2019 Issue Call for Papers

The Journal Territorial and Maritime Studies (JTMS) is soliciting submissions for its Winter/Spring 2019 issue. In the interest of increasing submissions, JTMS is offering authors of articles successfully passing peer review and selected for publication in the Winter/Spring 2019 issue an honorarium of $1000. JTMS is an interdisciplinary Journal of research on territorial and maritime issues sponsored by the Northeast Asia History Foundation with editorial offices hosted by Yonsei University in South Korea. The Journal provides an academic medium for the announcement and dissemination of research results the fields of history, international law, international relations, geography, peace studies, and any other relevant discipline. The journal covers all continental areas across the world, and it discusses any territorial and maritime subjects through the various research methods from different perspectives; moreover, practical studies as well as theoretical works, which contribute to a better understanding of territorial and maritime issues, are encouraged.

Manuscript should be submitted electronically to Submitted papers should include four major sections: the title page, structured abstract, main body, and references. The title page should contain the title of the paper, the author(s) name, the institutional affiliation and keywords. Manuscripts should follow the JTMS style guide available on our website. A length of maximum 9,000 words is preferred for an article, including endnotes, and approximately 2,000 words for a review. Submissions wishing to be considered for the Summer/Fall issue must submit their manuscripts by no later than September 15th, 2019. Inquiries may be sent via the email address provided above.

Our style guide and other journal information may be found on our website.

Call for Papers: Systems Theory and Human Rights

A call for papers has been issued for a conference on "Systems Theory and Human Rights," to be held at Lancaster University on October 18, 2018. Here's the call:

Recent years have seen a blossoming of scholarship on the philosophical concept of human rights, and the related notion of human rights law, with contributions from authors as diverse as Allen Buchanan, Charles Beitz, Costas Douzinas, James Griffin, and Gunther Teubner. The objective of this roundtable is to consider the distinctive offering from systems theory to the debate, including the closed systems theory of autopoiesis and open theory of complexity.

The Conference will include presentations by Christopher Thornhill (A Sociology of Transnational Constitutions (CUP, 2016) and Steven Wheatley (The Idea of International Human Rights Law (OUP, 2019).

The organisers welcome proposals from anyone working in this area, including PhD students and Early Career Researchers. There is no charge for attendance, and refreshments will be provided. Unfortunately, we are unable to help with travel and other costs.

If you are interested in present, please send a brief outline (no more than 500 words) to Professor Steven Wheatley ( by 14 September.

If you are interested in attending without presenting, please also let us know.

Shaffer: Legal Realism and International Law

Gregory Shaffer (Univ. of California, Irvine - Law) has posted Legal Realism and International Law (in International Legal Theory: Foundations and Frontiers, Jeffrey L Dunoff & Mark A Pollack eds., forthcoming). Here's the abstract:
This chapter presents the legal realist approach to international law. It is in five parts. Part 1 provides a brief background of the genesis and core attributes of legal realism, breaking down legal realism into three interrelated dimensions—behavioral, critical, and pragmatic—that explain law’s development and practice. Part 2 presents how American legal realism migrated into and influenced international legal theory, starting with the realism of Hans Morgenthau and policy science of Myres McDougal, then turning to the development of transnational legal theory with Philip Jessup and the rise of global administrative law with the proliferation and deepening of international institutions. Part 3 presents the two principal dimensions of new legal realism—empiricism and pragmatism. The new legal realist approach builds from significant developments in the social sciences and opportunities and demands for transnational problem-solving in light of increased transnational social connectedness and international institutionalization. The section defines new legal realism positively in terms of the interaction of such internal legal and external extra-legal factors as reason and power, legal craft and empirics, and legal tradition and demand for change, and negatively in terms of its foils—on the one hand, a new formalism that relies on rationalist presuppositions and, on the other hand, a postmodernism that eschews social science and pragmatist engagement. Part 4 assesses the strengths and challenges of legal realism. Its strengths are the opening of the black box of international lawmaking and practice, which frequently reveals structural tilts in favor of powerful actors, combined with a pragmatic drive for international law adaptation and reform. Its challenges, to which this section responds, are the risks of scientism and losing sight of what makes law distinctive—namely doctrine and legal normativity. Part 5 addresses the critical place of legal realism for understanding and responding to the purported crises of international law today.

Thursday, August 16, 2018

New Volume: Ethiopian Yearbook of International Law

The latest volume of the Ethiopian Yearbook of International Law (2017) is out. Contents include:
  • Articles
    • Martha Belete Hailu & Zeray Yihdego, The Law and Policy of Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection in Ethiopia: An Appraisal of Theories, Practices and Challenges
    • Tina Hunter, Comparative Perspective on Exhaustible Resource Development in Ethiopia: Lessons from the Norwegian Legal Framework and Experience
    • Salman M.A. Salman, The GERD and the Revival of the Egyptian–Sudanese Dispute over the Nile Waters
    • Melaku Geboye Desta & Guillaume Gérout, The Challenge of Overlapping Regional Economic Communities in Africa: Lessons for the Continental Free Trade Area from the Failures of the Tripartite Free Trade Area
    • Like Fish in a Stream? Considering the Agency of the UN Peacekeepers of the Global South: Rwanda and India as Case Studies Philip Roberts
  • Current Development
    • Fayokemi Olorundami, The Kenya/Somalia Maritime Boundary Delimitation Dispute
    • Makane Moïse Mbengue & Kirsten McClellan,The ICC and Africa: Should the Latter Remain Engaged?
  • Case Report
    • Thomas R. Snider & Jackson Shaw Kern, Case Note on PetroTrans Company Ltd. v. Ministry of Mines of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia

Choudhury: Balancing Soft and Hard Law for Business and Human Rights

Barnali Choudhury (Univ. College London - Law) has posted Balancing Soft and Hard Law for Business and Human Rights. Here's the abstract:
In the wake of increasing corporate disasters, there has been an urgent need to address business impacts on human rights. Yet business responsibilities for human rights are mainly voluntary and likely best termed ‘soft law’. Recently, however, several states have begun negotiations for an international binding treaty in this area suggesting a need to turn to ‘hard law’ to increase the efficacy of business and human rights (BHR) initiatives. This article argues that because soft and hard law concepts are not dichotomous, BHR governance need not become ‘hard law’ to be effective. Rather ‘hardened’ soft law instruments can be equally effective.

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Kjeldgaard-Pedersen: The International Legal Personality of the Individual

Astrid Kjeldgaard-Pedersen (Univ. of Copenhagen - Law) has published The International Legal Personality of the Individual (Oxford Univ. Press 2018). Here's the abstract:

This is the first monograph to scrutinize the relationship between the concept of international legal personality as a theoretical construct and the position of the ultimate subject, the individual, as a matter of positive international law. By testing the four main theoretical conceptions of international legal personality against historical and existing norms of positive international law that regulate the conduct of individuals, the book argues that the common narrative in contemporary scholarship about the development of the role of the individual in the international legal system is flawed.

Contrary to conventional wisdom, international law did not apply to states alone until World War II, only to transform during the second half of the 20th century so as to include individuals as its subjects. Rather, the answer to the question of individual rights and obligations under international law is - and always was - strictly empirical. It follows, of course, that the entities governed by a particular norm tell us nothing about the legal system to which that norm belongs. Instead, the distinction between international law and national law turns exclusively on whether the source of the norm in question is international or national in kind. Against the background of these insights, the book shows how present-day international lawyers continue to allow an idea, which was never more than a scholarly invention of the 19th century, to influence the interpretation and application of international law. This state of affairs has significant real-world ramifications as international legal rights and obligations of individuals (and other non-state entities) are frequently applied more restrictively than interpretation without presumptions regarding 'personality' would merit.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Attard: The IMLI Treatise on Global Ocean Governance

David Joseph Attard (IMO International Maritime Law Institute) has published The IMLI Treatise on Global Ocean Governance - Volume I: UN and Global Ocean Governance; Volume II: UN Specialized Agencies and Global Ocean Governance; Volume III: The IMO and Global Ocean Governance (Oxford Univ. Press 2018). Here's the abstract:

The 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) remains the cornerstone of global ocean governance. However, it lacks effective provisions or mechanisms to ensure that all ocean space and related problems are dealt with holistically. With seemingly no opportunity for revision due to the Conventions burdensome amendment provisions, complementary mechanisms dealing with such aspects of global ocean governance including maritime transport, fisheries, and marine environmental sustainability, have been developed under the aegis of the United Nations and other relevant international organizations. This approach is inherently fragmented and unable to achieve sustainable global ocean governance. In light of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly Goal 14, the IMLI Treatise proposes a new paradigm on the basis of integrated and cross-sectoral approach in order to realise a more effective and sustainable governance regime for the oceans.

Volume I focuses on the role of UN as the central intergovernmental organization responsible for global ocean governance. It examines the ocean governance challenges and how the present legal, policy, and institutional frameworks of the UN have addressed these challenges. It identifies the strengths and weaknesses of UN legal structures and offers tangible proposals to realize the ambition of a global ocean governance system.

Volume II focuses on the role of the UN Specialized Agencies towards the development of effective and sustainable ocean governance by looking at the more elaborate mechanisms they developed in order to achieve the desired objectives laid down in UNCLOS. From FAO to UNODC, the volume examines how they ensure sustainable development and how much coordination exists among them.

Volume III examines how the IMO, with 171 Member States and 3 Associated Members, has and continues to promote the goals of safe, secure, sound, and efficient shipping on clean oceans. It studies the interface and interaction between UNCLOS and IMO instruments and how IMOs safety, security, and environmental protection conventions have contributed to global ocean governance, including the peaceful order of the polar regions.

Monday, August 13, 2018

Smiley: Lawless Wars of Empire? The International Law of War in the Philippines, 1898–1903

Will Smiley (Reed College - History) has published Lawless Wars of Empire? The International Law of War in the Philippines, 1898–1903 (Law & History Review, Vol. 36, no. 3, pp. 511-550, August 2018). Here's the abstract:
Writing for his fellow military officers in early 1903, United States Army Major C.J. Crane reflected on the recent Philippine–American War. The bloody struggle to suppress an insurgency in the Philippines after the United States had annexed them from Spain in 1899 had officially concluded the previous July. The war had been accompanied by fierce racist sentiments among Americans, and in keeping with these, Crane described his foes as “the most treacherous people in the world.” But Crane's discussion drew as much on concepts of law as it did on race. The average American officer, Crane argued, had “remembered all the time that he was struggling with an enemy who was not entitled to the privileges usually granted prisoners of war,” and could be summarily executed, without benefit of “court-martial or other regular tribunal.” If anything, the Americans had been too generous. “Many [American] participants in the struggle,” he maintained, “have failed to fully understand that we were practically fighting an Asiatic nation in arms and almost every man a soldier in disguise and a violator” of the laws of war. But what did those laws mean to the United States during the conflict, and what does this indicate about the broader history of international law's relationship to empire?

Steinbrueck-Platise: Legitimate Governance as a Privilege and Price for the Autonomy of International Organisations

Mateja Steinbrueck-Platise (Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law) has posted Legitimate Governance as a Privilege and Price for the Autonomy of International Organisations (in The Legal Framework of the OSCE, Mateja Steinbrück Platise, Carolyn Moser, & Anne Peters eds., forthcoming). Here's the abstract:
This paper addresses the legitimacy crisis of the OSCE beyond the well-rehearsed political debates between the participating States as to the OSCE’s institutional form, functions and structure, and situates it instead in a broader context of global governance, analysing it from the international institutional law and human rights law perspective. In a first step, the concept of autonomy is introduced as one essential element of legal personality of international organizations, but still broader in scope in that it can be identified also with organizations lacking legal personality. Since the autonomy of an organization gives rise to certain legitimate expectations as to its purpose, functioning and outcomes, some of the legitimacy standards typically appertaining to the organizations with legal personality become relevant also with respect to other international organizations, including the OSCE. In a second step, in order to assess competing efforts of participating States to justify the OSCE’s legitimacy, the paper contextualises these efforts within the global trend of questioning the legitimacy of international organizations in general. Such an approach reveals not only certain reform proposals common to various international organizations, but also, and in particular, the lack of certain proposals within the OSCE that would aim towards strengthening the OSCE’s legal framework in terms of good governance. Finally, the contribution sketches out some of the legitimacy standards that call for a reform of a range of international organizations, with the OSCE being a prime example. However, this rising normative framework applies to organizations not because they might possess international legal personality or be established by a constitutive treaty, but because they have the capacity to autonomously exercise public power over individuals and peoples at large.

Moser: Conceptualising Accountability in the Legal and Institutional Framework of the OSCE

Carolyn Moser (Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law) has posted Conceptualising Accountability in the Legal and Institutional Framework of the OSCE (in The Legal Framework of the OSCE, Mateja Steinbrück Platise, Carolyn Moser, & Anne Peters eds., forthcoming). Here's the abstract:
This paper investigates accountability in the context of the OSCE, considering the Organisation’s unsettled legal framework. The analysis unfolds in three parts. The focus of the first part is on outlining the conceptual framework. Approached from a constitutional – that is power-centred – perspective, accountability is defined as a mechanism in which the power-wielder (actor) is held to account by a meaningful other (forum) in a three-step process as conceptualised by Bovens. Accountability mechanisms can thus cover a wide range of issues (legal, political and administrative matters) and activities (decision-making, steering and implementation). The second part then goes on to contextualise accountability in a broader governance scheme. Here, the paper inter alia inquires what the decisive criterion for accountability in the international arena would be, given that much public power is channelled through formal as well as informal international institutions. In the third and last part, existing accountability arrangements in the current OSCE framework are mapped and the relevance of accountability for the OSCE is discussed, also with reference to other international institutions entrusted with similar functions and tasks.

Alter, Helfer, & Madsen: International Court Authority

Karen J. Alter (Northwestern Univ. - Political Science), Laurence R. Helfer (Duke Univ. - Law), & Mikael Rask Madsen (Univ. of Copenhagen - iCourts: Center of Excellence for International Courts) have published International Court Authority (Oxford Univ. Press 2018). Contents include:
  • Karen J. Alter, Laurence R. Helfer & Mikael Rask Madsen, International Court Authority in a Complex World
  • Karen J. Alter, Laurence R. Helfer and Mikael Rask Madsen, How Context Shapes the Authority of International Courts,
  • James Thuo Gathii, The East African Court of Justice: Human Rights and Business Actors Compared
  • Solomon Ebobrah, The ECOWAS Community Court of Justice: A Dual Mandate with Skewed Authority
  • Claire Moore Dickerson, The OHADA Common Court of Justice and Arbitration: Its authority in the Formal and Informal Economy
  • Tendayi Achiume, The SADC Tribunal: Socio-Political Dissonance and the Authority of International Courts
  • Salvatore Caserta & Mikael Rask Madsen, The Caribbean Court of Justice: A Regional Integration and Post-Colonial Court
  • Karen J. Alter & Laurence R. Helfer, The Andean Tribunal of Justice: From Washington Consensus to Regional Crisis
  • Alexandra Huneeus, The Inter-American Court of Human Rights: Constitutionalism and Constitutional Lawyers across Countries
  • R. Daniel Kelemen, The Court of Justice of the European Community: Changing Authority in the Twenty-First Century
  • Mikael Rask Madsen, The European Court of Human Rights: From the Cold War to the Brighton Declaration and Backlash
  • Emilia Justyna Powell, The International Court of Justice and Islamic Law States: Territory and Diplomacy
  • Gregory Shaffer, Manfred Elsig, & Sergio Puig, The World Trade Organization's Dispute Settlement Body: Its Extensive but Fragile Authority
  • Leslie Vinjamuri, The International Criminal Court: The Paradox of Its Authority
  • Ron Levi, John Hagan, & Sara Dezalay, International Criminal Tribunals: Prosecutorial Strategies in Atypical Political Environments
  • Karen J. Alter, Laurence R. Helfer & Mikael Rask Madsen, International Court Authority in Question: Introduction to Part III
  • Andrei Marmor, Authority of International Courts: Scope, Power and Legitimacy
  • Michael Zürn, International Courts: Command v. Reflexive Authority
  • Ingo Venzke, International Court's De Facto Authority and its Justification
  • Jessica Greenberg, Jurisdiction, politics and truth-making: International Courts and the formation of translocal legal cultures
  • Andreas Follesdal, The Lords and Lady doth Protest too Much, Methinks: On Authority, Legitimacy and Power, on Motives and Beliefs
  • Ian Hurd, Authority and International Courts: A Comment on 'Content Independent' Social Science
  • Karen J. Alter, Laurence R. Helfer and Mikael Rask Madsen, Conclusion: Context, Authority, Power

Lectures: Methodologies of International Law

On October 11-13, 2018, the Dipartimento di Scienze Giuridiche at the Facoltà di Giurisprudenza of the Università degli Studi di Roma "La Sapienza" will host the fifth Gaetano Morelli Lectures. The topic is "Methodologies of International Law." The program is here.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Conference: Evolutionary interpretation in different international legal systems

On October 4-5, 2018, the Faculty of Law of the Université de Genève will host a conference on "Evolutionary interpretation in different international legal systems / L’interprétation évolutive dans différents systèmes juridiques internationaux." The program is here. Here's the idea:

Evolutionary interpretation is an important concept in international law. Due to the slow nature of negotiations and the amendment processes, as well as the difficulties in reaching a consensus, international treaties are rarely modified. Therefore, how is it possible to ensure a convention, possibly signed more than a century ago, remains relevant in today's world? Evolutionary interpretation allows a judge to adapt his or her reading of the text to new social, environmental or technological realities. The text does not change, its interpretation does.

This conference will gather together experts on the topic in various themes of international law. Whether discussing the theory of evolutionary interpretation or its application in economic law, humanitarian law, environmental law or even EU law, this conference aims at clarifying the concept and finding common ground between these areas. There is a range of possible approaches to evolutionary interpretation, and the conference will also explore the possible limits of those approaches.


Le principe d'interprétation évolutive est une notion importante du droit international. En raison de la lenteur du processus de négociation et de la difficulté de parvenir à un consensus, les textes juridiques internationaux changent peu. Dans ce contexte, comment assurer que des traités parfois conclus il y a plus d'un siècle restent d'actualité? L'interprétation évolutive permet précisément au juge d'adapter sa lecture du texte aux nouvelles préoccupations sociales, environnementales ou technologiques. Le texte ne change pas, mais son interprétation peut évoluer.

Cette conférence permettra de réunir des experts de la question dans des thèmes variés du droit international. Qu'il s'agisse de considérations générales sur l'interprétation évolutive ou de son application dans le cadre du droit économique, du droit international humanitaire, du droit de l'environnement ou même du droit européen, cette conférence a pour objectif de clarifier la notion et construire des ponts entre ces domaines. Différentes manières d'adapter la compréhension du texte à travers le temps existent, et la conférence explorera également les limites potentielles de celles-ci.

Guymon: Digest of United States Practice in International Law, 2017

CarrieLyn D. Guymon (Office of the Legal Adviser, U.S. Department of State) has published Digest of United States Practice in International Law, 2017. Here's a summary of the contents:

Legal Adviser Jennifer Newstead summarized the contents of the 2017 Digest in the Introduction, stating in part:

During most of this year, the Office was fortunate to be led by Principal Deputy Legal Adviser Richard Visek, and a number of excerpts from his remarks and presentations over the course of 2017 are included in this edition.

This volume features explanations of U.S. international legal views in 2017 delivered by representatives of the U.S. government. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson announced the conclusion that ISIS is responsible for genocide against Yezidis, Christians, and Shia Muslims in areas it controls or has controlled, as well as crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing directed at these and other minority groups. Secretary Tillerson also spoke in 2017 on the crisis in Burma’s Rakhine State, conveying the U.S. view that the situation in northern Rakhine state constitutes ethnic cleansing against Rohingya. U.S. Special Adviser Carlos Trujillo at the UN General Assembly’s Sixth Committee expressed the U.S. commitment to accountability for atrocity crimes, and support for international, regional, hybrid, and domestic mechanisms that pursue this goal. And, Acting Legal Adviser Rich Visek also commemorated the closure of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. Mr. Visek spoke at the Assembly of States Parties of the International Criminal Court, reiterating the United States’ long-standing and continuing objection to any ICC assertion of jurisdiction over nationals of States that are not parties to the Rome Statute, absent a UN Security Council referral or the consent of that State. Mr. Visek and Mark Simonoff, Minister Counselor for the U.S. Mission to the United Nations, expressed U.S. views on the work of the International Law Commission in 2017, including the topics of crimes against humanity, provisional application of treaties, general principles of law, evidence before international courts and tribunals, immunity of state officials, protection of the atmosphere, peremptory norms of general international law, succession of states in respect of state responsibility, and protection of the environment in relation to armed conflicts. The administration’s views were also conveyed in Congressional communications, including several regarding the domestic and international legal bases for the campaign against al-Qa’ida and associated forces, including against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.

There were numerous developments in 2017 relating to U.S. international agreements, treaties and other arrangements. The President notified Congress of his intent to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (“NAFTA”). President Trump also announced the U.S. intent to withdraw from the Paris Agreement on climate change but to begin negotiations to reenter either the Paris Agreement or a new arrangement. Additionally, the Administration pursued entry into new international obligations in a variety of areas. For example, Mr. Visek testified before the U.S. Senate on five treaties under consideration that had previously been transmitted: extradition treaties with Kosovo and Serbia; maritime boundary delimitation treaties with Kiribati and the Federated States of Micronesia; and the UN Convention on the Assignment of Receivables in International Trade. The United States entered into new arrangements, including Minute No. 323 to the 1944 Water Treaty with Mexico, outlining joint measures to address water shortages. Four agreements on preventing and combating serious crime entered into force in 2017, with Chile, Romania, New Zealand, and Cyprus. The United States signed new air transport agreements in 2017 with St. Vincent and the Grenadines and with the Kingdom of the Netherlands, in respect of Sint Maarten, and amended air transport agreements with Benin and Sri Lanka. The Minamata Convention on Mercury surpassed the requirement of 50 Parties for entry into force, and the Secretary of State signed the instrument of acceptance to join the 2012 amendments to the Gothenburg Protocol to the 1979 Convention on Long-Range Transboundary Air Pollution. The United States deposited its instrument of ratification for three regional fisheries conventions. The Republic of Cabo Verde concluded a new Status of Forces Agreement (“SOFA”) with the United States. And, the United States ratified the protocol for Montenegro to join NATO.

The United States was very active in its relations with Cuba, concluding a bilateral Joint Statement on Migration that ended the so-called Wet Foot-Dry Foot policy for Cuban migrants; a bilateral treaty to delimit the maritime boundary in the eastern Gulf of Mexico; a bilateral search and rescue agreement; a bilateral agreement to prepare for and respond to oil spills and hazardous substance pollution in the Gulf of Mexico and the Straits of Florida; a bilateral Law Enforcement Memorandum of Understanding; and also convening the sixth meeting of the Bilateral Commission. Later in the year, the United States ordered the departure of non-emergency personnel assigned to the U.S. Embassy in Havana, Cuba, due to health-related attacks on embassy employees, and President Trump signed the National Security Presidential Memorandum on Strengthening the Policy of the United States Toward Cuba (“NSPM”). With respect to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (“DPRK”), the Secretary of State designated the DPRK as a State Sponsor of Terrorism in November. In its relations with Russia, the State Department announced that it would require the closure of specified facilities in New York, Washington, D.C., and San Francisco in response to Russia’s invocation of parity to reduce the size of the United States presence in Russia. Several provisions in the Countering America’s Adversaries through Sanctions Act of 2017 (“CAATSA”) relate to, and provide for mandatory sanctions in connection with, Russia. In December, the President issued Proclamation 9683, “Recognizing Jerusalem as the Capital of the State of Israel and Relocating the United State Embassy to Israel to Jerusalem.” The United States condemned the government of Venezuela in several ways including Executive Order 13808, “Imposing Additional Sanctions With Respect to the Situation in Venezuela.” And, recognizing the progress made by the government of Sudan under the Five Track Engagement Plan, including the cessation of aerial bombings and military offensives in Darfur, the United States revoked certain longstanding economic sanctions on Sudan.

Call for Submissions: The Changing Paradigm of State-controlled Entities Regulation: Laws, Contracts and Disputes

Transnational Dispute Management has issued a call for submissions for a special issue on "The Changing Paradigm of State-controlled Entities Regulation: Laws, Contracts and Disputes." The call is here.

Nowak: Das Interventionsverbot im Bürgerkrieg

Christina Nowak has published Das Interventionsverbot im Bürgerkrieg: Darstellung eines Wandels durch die Bürgerkriege in Libyen, Syrien, Irak, Jemen und Ukraine seit 2011 (Peter Lang 2018). Here's the abstract:
Das völkergewohnheitsrechtliche Interventionsverbot ist seit jeher ein unverzichtbares Element des internationalen Friedenssicherungssystems. Trotz seiner unbestrittenen Wichtigkeit ist unklar, welche Handlungsweisen gegenwärtig von dem Verbot umfasst sind. Aufbauend auf eine umfassende Auswertung der Staatenpraxis seit 2011 untersucht die Autorin, unter welchen Voraussetzungen Regierungen und Oppositionsbewegungen in Bürgerkriegen völkerrechtsgemäß unterstützt werden dürfen. Angesichts der Schneise der Verwüstung, die sich seit Beginn des „Arabischen Frühlings" durch die betroffenen Länder erstreckt, hinterfragt die Autorin die kontemporäre rechtliche Relevanz des Interventionsverbots.

Gaetano Morelli Lectures Series: Decisions of the ICJ as Sources of International Law?

The second volume of the Gaetano Morelli Lectures Series has been published. The focus is: "Decisions of the ICJ as Sources of International Law?" Contents include
  • Alain Pellet, Decisions of the ICJ as Sources of International Law?
  • Christian J. Tams, The Development of International Law by the International Court of Justice
  • Paolo Palchetti, The Authority of the Decisions of International Judicial or Quasi-judicial Bodies in the Case Law of the International Court of Justice: Dialogue or Competition?

Bunting & Quirk: Contemporary Slavery: The Rhetoric of Global Human Rights Campaigns

Annie Bunting (York Univ. - Law & Society Program) & Joel Quirk (Univ. of the Witwatersrand - Political Studies) have published Contemporary Slavery: The Rhetoric of Global Human Rights Campaigns (Cornell Univ. Press 2018). Here's the abstract:

This volume brings together a cast of leading experts to carefully explore how the history and iconography of slavery has been invoked to support a series of government interventions, activist projects, legal instruments, and rhetorical performances. However well-intentioned these interventions might be, they nonetheless remain subject to a host of limitations and complications. Recent efforts to combat contemporary slavery are too often sensationalist, self-serving, and superficial and, therefore, end up failing the crucial test of speaking truth to power.

The widely held notion that antislavery is one of those rare issues that "transcends" politics or ideology is only sustainable because the underlying issues at stake have been constructed and demarcated in a way that minimizes direct challenges to dominant political and economic interests. This must change. By providing an original approach to the underlying issues at stake, Contemporary Slavery will help readers understand the political practices that have been concealed beneath the popular rhetoric and establishes new conversations between scholars of slavery and trafficking and scholars of human rights and social movements.

Grosbon: Résistance et résilience des pactes internationaux de droits de l’homme à l’épreuve d’une société internationale post-moderne

Sophie Grosbon (Université Paris Nanterre - Law) has published Résistance et résilience des pactes internationaux de droits de l’homme à l’épreuve d’une société internationale post-moderne (Pedone 2018). The table of contents is here.

Sharpe: The Regional Law of Refugee Protection in Africa

Marina Sharpe (McGill Univ. - Law) has published The Regional Law of Refugee Protection in Africa (Oxford Univ. Press 2018). Here's the abstract:
This book analyses the legal framework for refugee protection in Africa, including both refugee and human rights law as well as treaty and institutional elements. The regime is addressed in two parts. Part One analyses the relevant treaties: the 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees, the 1969 Organization of African Unity Convention Governing the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa and the 1981 African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights. The latter two regional instruments are examined in depth. This includes the first fulsome account of the African Refugee Conventions drafting, an interpretation of its unique refugee definition and original analysis of the relationships between the three treaties. Significant attention is devoted to the systemic relationship between the international and the regional refugee treaties and to the discrete relationships of conflict and complementary relationships between the two refugee instruments, as well as to the relationships between the African Refugee Convention and African Charter. Part Two focuses on the institutional architecture supporting the treaty framework. The Organization of African Unity is addressed in a historical sense, and the contemporary roles of the African Union, the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights and the current and contemplated African human rights courts are examined. This book is the first devoted to the legal framework for refugee protection in Africa.