The World Health Organization (WHO) has attracted an unprecedented level of criticism over its handling of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic. To enhance its legitimacy and better prepare for a future pandemic, various proposals to reform the WHO and the International Health Regulations have been made. Against this background, this article seeks to contribute to the ongoing discussions by investigating the nature of WHO’s work and its activities. Starting from the premise that much of the criticism stems from the uneasy coexistence of politics and expertise in WHO’s work, this article analyses some of the most controversial aspects of WHO’s initial response to the COVID-19 pandemic: (i) the alleged leniency towards China; (ii) the delay in declaring a public health emergency of international concern (PHEIC); and (iii) the delay in recommending the use of face masks for the general population. The article shows that politics infiltrates WHO activities in different ways, influencing even the processes that are conventionally seen as purely technical and science-based. At the same time, it argues that the influence of politics in WHO’s work should not be seen as some kind of atrophy, but should rather be considered a natural element that should be managed rather than dreaded.
Friday, April 1, 2022
Gruszczynski & Melillo: The Uneasy Coexistence of Expertise and Politics in the World Health Organization: Learning from the Experience of the Early Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic
Conference: Migration and Asylum Policy Systems: The Way Forward
New Issue: Questions of International Law
- Books - Livres
- Introduced by Lucas Lima
- Beatrice I. Bonafè, « Il doppio grado di giudizio nel processo internazionale » : une enquête sur le rôle de la fonction judiciaire internationale
- Robert Kolb, Loris Marotti’s Il doppio grado di giudizio nel processo internazionale. A review essay
New Issue: Revue québécoise de droit international
- L’Accord Canada-États-Unis-Mexique
- Érick Duchesne & Martin Pâquet, Les hauts et les bas de la libéralisation du commerce entre le Canada et les États-Unis, du Traité de réciprocité de 1854 à l’Accord de commerce Canada-États-Unis-Mexique (ACÉUM) de 2020
- Stéphane Paquin & Laurence Marquis, Gouvernance multiniveau et négociations commerciales : le rôle du Québec et de l’Ontario dans la renégociation de l’ALÉNA, du PTPGP et de l’AECG
- Frédéric Legendre & Laurie Durel, Le rôle du gouvernement du Québec dans les négociations d’accords de libre-échange : le cas de l’ACÉUM
- Marcela López-Vallejo & Jorge A. Schiavon, Sub-Federal Deliberative Exclusions and Free Trade: Mexico’s Centralized Federalism and Weak Institutional Capacities
- Antonio Ortiz Mena L.N. & Jorge A. Schiavon, The Institutional Design of CUSMA: Improvement or Reversal vis à vis NAFTA?
- Richard Ouellet, L’ACÉUM : un révélateur de la vraie nature du processus d’intégration économique en Amérique du Nord
- Florence G. Théberge & Étienne Hivon, Synthèse des changements aux règles d’origine introduits par l’Accord Canada-États-Unis-Mexique
- Christian Deblock, L’Amérique du Nord, un espace toujours plus intégré. L’ACÉUM et la coopération règlementaire
- Sylvain Zini, Le chapitre sur le travail dans l’ACÉUM : un progrès par rapport à l’ANACT, des attentes à concrétiser
- Gilbert Gagné, Le traitement des produits culturels et la clause d’exemption culturelle dans l’ALÉNA et l’ACÉUM
- Rabii Haji & Patrick Leblond, L’ACÉUM et le commerce numérique
- Geneviève Dufour, Michelle Hurdle, Les nouvelles obligations du Canada en matière de produits laitiers
- Charles-Emmanuel Côté, Le règlement des différends internationaux économiques en Amérique du Nord après l’Accord Canada-États-Unis-Mexique
- Bezahinibé Micheline Somda, Delphine Ducasse, & David Pavot, Le Chapitre 33 de l’ACÉUM et la prise en compte de la monnaie dans un accord commercial : comment faire du neuf avec du vieux?
Thursday, March 31, 2022
Podcast: The Climate Show
Podcast: Antonio Cassese: The Stubborn Sparrow
Conference: Consenting to International Law
Call for Papers: International Law of Culture in Armed Conflict
Conference: Legal Histories of Empires
Ní Ghráinne: Internally Displaced Persons and International Refugee Law
Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) are persons who have been forced to leave their places of residence as a result of armed conflict, violence, human rights violations, or natural or human-made disasters, but who have not crossed an international border. There are about 55 million IDPs in the world today, outnumbering refugees by roughly 2:1. Although IDPs and refugees have similar wants, needs and fears, IDPs have traditionally been seen as a domestic issue, and the international legal and institutional framework of IDP protection is still in its relative infancy.
This book explores to what extent the protection of IDPs complements or conflicts with international refugee law. Three questions form the core of the book's analysis: What is the legal and normative relationship between IDPs and refugees? To what extent is an individual's real risk of internal displacement in their country of origin relevant to the qualification and cessation of refugee status? And to what extent is the availability of IDP protection measures an alternative to asylum? It argues that the IDP protection framework does not, as a matter of law, undermine refugee protection. The availability of protection within a country of origin cannot be a substitute for granting refugee status unless it constitutes effective protection from persecution and there is no real risk of refoulement. The book concludes by identifying current and future challenges in the relationship between IDPs and refugees, illustrating the overall impact and importance of the findings of the research, and setting out questions for future research.
Wednesday, March 30, 2022
Jeßberger, Vormbaum, & Burghardt: Strafrecht und Systemunrecht: Festschrift für Gerhard Werle zum 70. Geburtstag
Tuesday, March 29, 2022
New Blog: Transnational Litigation Blog
The justiciability of Holocaust expropriation claims; treaty interpretation in international custody disputes; the adequacy of pleading the enslavement of children; accessing U.S. discovery for international arbitration; the availability of punitive damages for international terrorism; the immunity of international organizations before U.S. courts; how to serve process on a foreign state: The U.S. Supreme Court has considered all of these transnational litigation questions just in the last few years. When people, goods, and money cross borders, so do disputes. And when disputes cross borders, U.S. courts–both state and federal–must figure out how to accommodate foreign parties, foreign claims, and foreign law.
The resulting questions and challenges bridge areas of study and practice that are too often siloed. Our goal in founding TLB is to bring together scholars and practitioners who may not yet realize how much they have in common. We come to transnational litigation from different scholarly perspectives, and we aspire for TLB to be a forum for all of them.
New Issue: Vereinte Nationen
- Schwerpunkt: Mission: Frieden
- Kseniya Oksamytna, Eine Leistungskultur in der UN-Friedenssicherung
- Torsten Konopka, Mali: Rückzug oder mehr Risiko?
- 10 Drei Fragen an | Jean-Pierre Lacroix
- Philipp Rotmann, Nicht schutzlos ausgeliefert
- Ruth Adwoa Frimpong, Kwesi Aning, Annika S. Hansen, & Daniel Forti, Stimmen zur Zukunft der UN-Friedenseinsätze
- Im Diskurs
- Hanns Schumacher, Ein kurzer Quantensprung
- Margret Carstens, Schadensbegrenzung nötig
Hoffmann: Illegal Legality and the Façade of Good Faith – Migration and Law in Populist Hungary
Hungarian migration regulation has undergone a radical transformation since 2015, resulting in a system that essentially deprives asylum seekers of any international protection. This was a strategic move by the government to portray itself as the defender of Hungary and even Europe of the menace of uncontrolled migration. This article critically analyzes this transformation by first giving a comprehensive account of the major legislative changes and showing how they were framed to boost the populist political propaganda of the government. Then it argues that even though such populist legalism is in clear contravention of Hungary’s international legal obligations and thus constitute bad faith action, the European Union is still powerless to effectively oppose these measures since its own asylum policies are aimed at maintaining “Fortress Europe”, i.e. restricting irregular migration as much as possible through legal and informal measures. In conclusion, the only real antidote to populist legalism would be acting in good faith.
Monday, March 28, 2022
Ridi & Fikfak: Sanctioning to Change State Behaviour
This article, which sits in the context of a wider project devoted to understanding how state behaviour may be changed, seeks to focus on the act of sanctioning, broadly construed, as functional to that goal. Freeing ourselves from the constraints of too narrow a definition of the term ‘sanction’, we consider a wider gamut of instances of penalties on target states which are intended to accomplish the goal of changing state behaviour. Our goal is threefold: first, we aim to stimulate a debate on the nature of the act of sanctioning, which, we argue, is more embedded within international law than generally conceded; second, by looking at different sanctioning practices, we aim to identify their common elements and offer a taxonomy of the act of sanctioning within international law; third, we aim to consider the implications of different sanctioning practices and, in particular, understanding how and when they can amount to effective and acceptable tools to change state behaviour.
Conference: Thirty-Seventh Investment Treaty Forum Public Conference
Mahaseth & Banusekar: Living in the Shadows: Rohingya Refugees in Malaysia
Denied citizenship and persecuted in Myanmar, the Rohingya have fled to various countries, including Malaysia. However, Malaysia is not a signatory to the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and its 1967 Protocol. It also has weak domestic legal and regulatory mechanisms to protect refugees and asylum-seekers. In this paper, the authors study the treatment of Rohingya refugees in Malaysia and suggest how the Malaysian legal system can better protect them by adapting international legal practices.
Call for Papers: International Criminal Law and Transnational Advocacy: Problematising the International Penal Turn
Call for Papers: Change and Resilience in International Law
Park: Incomplete International Investment Agreements: Problems, Causes and Solutions
This timely book is a comprehensive analysis of incomplete International Investment Agreements (IIAs), featuring insights from negotiating experiences in a number of bilateral and multilateral investment treaties. It examines problems, causes, and solutions surrounding this phenomenon by employing incomplete contract theory and opens new avenues in discussing how to correct incomplete IIAs.
Throughout the book, the author challenges the fundamental assumption that most IIAs are concluded in a complete manner and emphasizes the importance of accounting for the fact that IIAs are often concluded without significant investment protection articles and are subject to renegotiation. Park applies various interdisciplinary approaches, including incomplete contract theory and development theory, to illustrate how countries easily postpone their treaty negotiations and are willing to renegotiate to remedy incomplete IIAs. Furthermore, he depicts the reality of treaty negotiation in recent years, helping readers to understand how countries are failing to negotiate complete IIAs and how utilizing an economics approach could analyse and resolve this issue.
Sunday, March 27, 2022
New Issue: European Convention on Human Rights Law Review
- Vassilis P. Tzevelekos & Kanstantsin Dzehtsiarou, Climate Change: The World and the ECtHR in Unchartered Waters
- Tim Eicke, Climate Change and the Convention: Beyond Admissibility
- Ole W. Pedersen, Any Role for the echr When it Comes to Climate Change?
- Helen Keller & Abigail D Pershing, Climate Change in Court: Overcoming Procedural Hurdles in Transboundary Environmental Cases
- Aikaterini Tsampi, The European Court of Human Rights and (Framework Convention on) Tobacco Control: A Relationship that Goes up in Smoke?
- Paul Johnson & Silvia Falcetta, The Inclusion of Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity in Relationships Education: Faith-Based Objections and the European Convention on Human Rights
- Nikos Vogiatzis, The Second Advisory Opinion by the Strasbourg Court under Protocol 16 A Contextual Analysis
Pollack: International court curbing in Geneva: Lessons from the paralysis of the WTO Appellate Body
The 21st century has witnessed a backlash against many international courts (ICs). Studies of IC backlash have generally taken an optimistic tack, noting that most courts have survived backlash intact or—in the case of the paralyzed Appellate Body (AB) of the World Trade Organization (WTO)—are likely to do so after a temporary period of slumber. In this context, this paper analyzes the United States' successful effort to paralyze the AB, deriving lessons from this deviant case of backlash against one of the world's most active and independent ICs. Undertaken in the context of the “Reversing Delegation” research project, this account is organized in five parts. First, I demonstrate that the creation of the AB was a classic instance of delegation of dispute-settlement power, and that the AB quickly emerged as an active agent of trade liberalization. Second, I explore the roots of politicization, noting that dissatisfaction with AB jurisprudence preceded the Trump administration, although Trump's delegitimation of the AB was more far-reaching than that of his predecessors. Third, I examine the administration's use of the veto power to paralyze the AB, an act of de facto de-delegation. Fourth, I assess the pushback from the many other WTO members that sought to defend the AB, showing how they failed to blunt the US campaign. Fifth, I analyze the remarkably successful outcome of the US attack, and draw lessons for judicial independence and the rule of law in international politics.
Longobardo: Human Rights Council’s Fact-Finding Missions and the Assessment of Violations of the Principle of Precaution in Attack in the Absence of Cooperation by the Attacker
This chapter aims at assessing whether HRC fact-finding missions are legally able to assess the violation of certain rules pertaining to the principle of precaution in attack in the absence of cooperation of the concerned attackers. In particular, the question is whether HRC fact-find missions can reach any conclusion through inference in relation to alleged violations of Article 57(2)(a)(i) and (ii) of the 1977 First Additional Protocol (API), which embody the duty to verify in advance the objective and expected consequences of an attack, and to choose means and methods of warfare that avoid or minimise incidental civilian casualties or damages. Since these duties bind ‘those who plan or decide upon an attack’ and compliance is dependent on the information available to them before the attack, it may be argued that the lack of cooperation of the attackers may impair the ability of fact-finding missions to assess respect for these rules. Nonetheless, some HRC fact-find missions have offered conclusions on the violations of these duties based on inference. Since these conclusions have raised some criticism, it is necessary to explore in more details whether international law permits HRC fact-find missions to ascertain through inference that the rules under Article 57(2)(a)(i) and (ii) of the API have been violated.