International Law in Brief


International Law in Brief (ILIB) is a forum that provides updates on current developments in international law from the editors of ASIL's International Legal Materials.
| By: Kehinde Winful : March 31, 2022 |

On March 30, 2022, Britain's Foreign Secretary, Liz Truss, announced Britain's withdrawal of its judges from Hong Kong’s top court. According to the announcement, the decision came as a result of the fact that “since the imposition of the National Security Law in 2020, China has continued to use this legislation to undermine the fundamental rights and freedoms of the people of Hong Kong.” Noting that “China’s actions include restrictions on freedom of expression, the stifling of opposition voices, and the criminalising of dissent,” the Foreign Secretary said, “the situation has reached a...


| By: Kehinde Winful : March 29, 2022 |

On March 25, 2022, The Schell Center for International Human Rights at Yale Law School and the human rights organization, Fortify Rights, released a report, titled Nowhere is Safe, that details how the Myanmar junta was responsible for crimes against humanity, murder, torture, and forced displacement of civilians and political leaders. According to the Schell Center, the report “is based on more than 120 testimonies, leaked documents and information, and in-depth legal analysis of new evidence. It focuses on the first six months after the military’s attempted coup on February 1,...


| By: Justine N. Stefanelli : March 23, 2022 |

On March 23, 2022, U.S. Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken, issued a statement determining that "members of Russia's forces have committed war crimes in Ukraine." The statement recounts the destruction by Russian forces of "apartment buildings, schools, hospitals, critical infrastructure, civilian vehicles, shopping centers, and ambulances" and notes that the United Nations "has officially confirmed more than 2,500 civilian casualties, including dead and wounded." This conclusion was reached "based on a careful review of available information from public intelligence sources." Blinken...


| By: Justine N. Stefanelli : March 22, 2022 |

On March 21, 2022, Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken gave remarks at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in which he stated that he has "determined that members of the Burmese military committed genocide and crimes against humanity against Rohingya." According to Blinken, this is the eighth instance of genocide committed since the Holocaust. Secretary Blinken's decision was "based on reviewing a factual assessment and legal analysis prepared by the State Department, which included detailed documentation by a range of independent, impartial sources, including . . . Amnesty International...


| By: Justine N. Stefanelli : March 16, 2022 |

On March 16, 2022, the International Court of Justice delivered its Order on Ukraine's request for the indication of provisional measures in the case concerning Allegations of Genocide under the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (Ukraine v. Russia). Ukraine made a number of requests, including that the Court declare that no acts of genocide have been committed in the Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts of Ukraine, contrary to the claims made by the Russian Federation.

With regard to the question whether the Court had jurisdiction to indicate...


| By: Kehinde Winful : March 15, 2022 |

On March 14, 2022 the International Criminal Court (ICC) announced that Mr. Maxime Jeoffroy Eli Mokom Gawaka (Mokom Gawaka) had surrounded to the Court following a warrant for his arrest on charges of  “war crimes and crimes against humanity allegedly committed in Bangui and other locations in the Central African Republic ("CAR") in 2013 and 2014.” The Chamber found reasonable grounds to believe that Mokom Gawaka is responsible for “crimes against humanity consisting in (attempted) murder, extermination, deportation or forcible transfer of population, imprisonment or other severe...


| By: Kehinde Winful : March 11, 2022 |

On March 8, 2022, President Biden signed an executive order banning the import of petroleum and related products of Russian origin into the US. The order prohibited the importation of crude oil; petroleum; petroleum fuels, oils, and products of their distillation; liquefied natural gas; coal; and coal products. The order also prohibited any new investment in the energy sector in the Russian Federation by a United States person.


| By: Kehinde Winful : March 11, 2022 |

On March 9, 2022, the US Department of State designated “former Ecuadorian President Abdalá Jaime Bucaram Ortiz, Sr. due to his involvement in significant corruption, including misappropriation of public funds, accepting bribes, and interfering with public processes.” The statement of the public designation was “made under Section 7031(c) of the Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Act, 2021, as carried forward by the Continued Appropriations Act, 2022.” It “reaffirms the commitment of the United States to combat corruption that undermines the...


| By: Kehinde Winful : March 08, 2022 |

On March 3, 2022, the White House released a statement outlining its decision to target “additional Russian elites and family members who continue supporting President Putin despite his brutal invasion of Ukraine.”  The statement announced that “[t]hese individuals and their family members will be cut off from the U.S. financial system,” which includes having their assets in the United States frozen and their property blocked from use. The statement also announced that “the United States and governments all over the world will work to identify and freeze the assets.” The statement...


| By: Justine N. Stefanelli : March 03, 2022 |

On March 2, 2022, the United States became the sixth signatory to the 2019 Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Judgments in Civil or Commercial Matters, following Costa Rica, Israel, the Russian Federation, Ukraine, and Uruguay. The Convention was signed on behalf of the U.S. by Ms. Jennifer DeWitt Walsh, Acting Deputy Chief of Mission. The Convention aims to "facilitate[...] the effective international circulation of judgments in civil or commercial matters" through a set of harmonized conditions for recognition and enforcement. The Convention will enter into force...