International Law in Brief

By: Caitlin Behles | June 27, 2017 |

On June 23, 2017, the United Nations Human Rights Council adopted a resolution directing the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to send a team of international experts to investigate alleged human rights violations and abuses in the central Kasai region of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). According to the press release, the resolution requests the international experts be sent “to collect and preserve information, to determine the facts and circumstances in accordance with international standards and practice concerning alleged human rights violations and abuses, and violations...

By: Caitlin Behles | June 26, 2017 |

On June 14, 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled in Stichting Brein v. Ziggo that making available an online platform for sharing copyright-protected works may constitute copyright infringement. According to the press release, the case concerned two internet providers in the Netherlands, who were asked to block the domain names and IP addresses of “The Pirate Bay,” a platform that allows users to share and upload files that may be copyright-protected. The Court noted that under an EU Directive “any act by which a user, with full knowledge of the relevant facts,...

By: Caitlin Behles | June 23, 2017 |

On May 26, 2017, the African Court on Human and People’s Rights ruled in African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights v. The Republic of Kenya that Kenya violated Articles 1, 2, 8, 14 17(2) and (3), 21, and 22 of the African Charter on Human and Peoples' Rights when it evicted the Ogiek Community of the Mau Forest.  According to the case summary, “the Kenyan Government issued a thirty (30) days eviction notice to the Ogiek and other settlers of the Mau Forest, demanding that they move out of the forest on the grounds that the forest constituted a reserved water catchment zone,...

By: Caitlin Behles | June 23, 2017 |

On May 24, 2017, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) released the 2016 Minnesota Protocol on the Investigation of Potentially Unlawful Death, “an updated version of the 1991 United Nations (UN) Minnesota Manual on the Effective Prevention of Extra-legal, Arbitrary and Summary Executions, which, through widespread usage, became known as the Minnesota Protocol (the Protocol).” The original Protocol was drafted to supplement the UN Principles on the Effective Prevention and Investigation of Extra-legal, Arbitrary and Summary Executions, “which set out international...

By: Caitlin Behles | June 23, 2017 |

On May 24, 2017, the Security Council passed a resolution that featured a new framework developed by its Counter-Terrorism Committee entitled “Comprehensive International Framework to Counter Terrorist Narratives,” which contains “recommended guidelines and good practices to effectively counter the ways that ISIL (Da’esh), Al Qaida and associated individuals, groups, undertakings and entities use their narratives to encourage, motivate, and recruit others to commit terrorist acts.” The Council stressed that member states and UN entities should follow the guidelines and urged “Member States...

By: Caitlin Behles | June 23, 2017 |

On May 18, 2017, the International Court of Justice issued a preliminary ruling in the Jadhav Case (India v. Pakistan), finding that Pakistan must “take all measures at its disposal” to ensure that Kulbhushan Sudhir Jadhav, an Indian national, is not executed pending a final judgment of the Court. According to the press release, the case concerns India’s claims against Pakistan “in a dispute concerning alleged violations of Article 36 of the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations of 24 April 1963 with respect to an Indian national, Mr. Jadhav, sentenced to death in Pakistan.”...

By: Caitlin Behles | June 23, 2017 |

On May 15, 2017, the Security Council adopted a resolution extending the mandate of the United Nations Interim Force for Abyei (UNISFA) until November 15, 2017. The Council decided to reduce UNISFA’s authorized troop ceiling from 5,326 to 4,791 and urged the all parties to resume direct negotiations in order to agree on a final settlement of the Abyei question. The Council also noted its regret regarding “the lack of significant progress made by both parties on the benchmarks for the Joint Border Verification and Monitoring Mechanism (JBVMM) and the unnecessary impediments imposed upon the...

By: Caitlin Behles | June 02, 2017 |

On May 16, 2017, the Office of the Special Rapporteur for Freedom of Expression of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights released a report entitled “National Case Law on Freedom of Expression.” According to the press release, the report provides “an overview of a number of key judicial decisions adopted in the last four years by national supreme courts in Latin America and the Caribbean” and aims “to strengthen the capacity of national courts and to consolidate the role of judiciary’s as key players in protecting the rights of freedom of expression and access to public information...

By: Caitlin Behles | June 02, 2017 |

On May 16, 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled that the EU cannot conclude a free trade agreement with Singapore as it currently stands, without the participation of the member states. According to the press release, the European Commission submitted a request to the Court to assess whether the EU has exclusive competence allowing it to sign and conclude a trade agreement between the EU and Singapore that the parties initialed in 2013. The Court held “that the free trade agreement with Singapore cannot, in its current form, be concluded by the EU alone, because some of...

By: Caitlin Behles | June 01, 2017 |

On May 10, 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled in Chavez-Vilchez v. Raad van bestuur van de Sociale verzekeringsbank that a state may potentially be required to provide a third-country national with a right of residence if that individual has a minor child who is an EU citizen. According to the press release, the Court noted that Article 20 of the Treaty on the Functioning on the European Union “precludes national measures, including decisions refusing a right of residence to the family members of an EU citizen, which have the effect of depriving EU citizens of...