AJIL Unbound

By: Rachelle Adams | December 03, 2014 | 02:45 PM EST


In Romain Gary’s novel Roots of Heaven, Morel, a French national in despair over the plight of Africa’s  elephants, resolves to promote an international convention that will ban all hunting of elephants. The setting is colonial Chad in French Equatorial Africa in 1953, and, evocative of the current crisis, the story relates that thirty thousand elephants had been killed that year alone.  The theme of the use of international law to protect the elephant weaves throughout the narrative. Morel is obsessed with gathering signatures to his petition...

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By: Anne Peters | December 02, 2014 | 03:45 PM EST

Editor’s note: This contribution builds on “Novel practice of the Security Council: Wildlife poaching and trafficking as a threat to the peace” by this author, published on EJIL Talk!, the blog of the European Journal of International Law.

Instability and lawlessness in the African Great Lake region

The two African states Democratic Republic of Congo and the Central African Republic have been...

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By: André Nollkaemper | December 01, 2014 | 11:00 AM EST

Editor’s Note: This post is based on an ESIL Reflection, Framing Elephant Extinction, vol. 3, issue 6.


The development of rules and institutions relating to protection of elephants demonstrates the cardinal role of issue framing for international law. Frames are lenses that we use to highlight parts of reality and to promote particular policies over others. Over the past few decades, a wide variety of treaties and institutions addressing threats to elephants has...

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By: Jacqueline Peel | November 21, 2014 | 11:00 AM EST

In international environmental law, the elephant is an icon. Like other “charismatic megafauna” such as whales and pandas, the plight of the elephant has captured the imagination of the general public and generated a raft of international regulations. In efforts to protect the elephant, we can track many of the elements of international law that have been characteristic of the environmental field as a whole: historical beginnings in concerns to prevent the over-exploitation of a harvested species; the rise...

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