International Law in Brief


International Law in Brief (ILIB) is forum that provides updates on current developments in international law from the editors of ASIL's International Legal Materials.
| By: Caitlin Behles : March 29, 2017 |

On March 14, 2017, the Grand Chamber of the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled in Achbita v. G4S Secure Solutions NV and Bougnaoui v. Micropole SA that internal work regulations that prohibit visibly wearing political, philosophical or religious signs do not amount to direct discrimination. According to the press release, in Achbita, Samira Achbita was fired from her position as a receptionist for her refusal to stop wearing an Islamic headscarf at a company with regulations that prohibited employees “from wearing any visible signs of their political,...


| By: Caitlin Behles : March 28, 2017 |

On March 14, 2017, the Grand Chamber of the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled in A, B, C, D v. van Buitenlandse Zaken that acts of armed forces during armed conflict governed by international humanitarian law may be considered terrorist acts for purposes of EU law. The case arose after Dutch authorities froze the assets of four individuals due to their ties to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE)—which the Netherlands had concluded was a terrorist organization—while implementing Resolution 1373 of the UN Security Council aimed at preventing the financing of...


| By: Caitlin Behles : March 28, 2017 |

On March 7, 2017, the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled in X and X v État belge that EU member states are not required to grant entry visas based on humanitarian grounds to individuals who wish to enter their territory in order to apply for asylum, though they may do so based on their own national laws. The case concerned a Syrian family who claimed to be facing inhuman treatment in Aleppo and applied for visas at the Belgian embassy in Beirut, Lebanon, with the aim of entering Belgium to apply for asylum. According to the press release, Belgian authorizes denied the...


| By: Caitlin Behles : March 27, 2017 |

On February 28, 2017, the General Court of the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled in JingAo Solar Co. Ltd v. Council of the European Union to uphold a set of duties that the European Council imposed on solar panel imports from China. According to the press release, the duties stemmed from a European Commission investigation in 2012 and 2013—which revealed that companies were selling the panels well below normal market value—and were imposed to mitigate damage from the unfair commercial practice to the EU industry. The Court found that lawmakers didn’t err in assigning...


| By: Caitlin Behles : March 27, 2017 |

On February 22, 2017, the World Trade Organization (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) entered into force after achieving the required acceptance from two-thirds of the WTO’s 164 members for the agreement to take effect. According to the WTO, the TFA “contains provisions for expediting the movement, release and clearance of goods, including goods in transit. It also sets out measures for effective cooperation between customs and other appropriate authorities on trade facilitation and customs compliance issues. It further contains provisions for technical assistance and capacity...


| By: Caitlin Behles : March 27, 2017 |

On February 23, 2017, the World Trade Organization (WTO) Appellate Body issued its report in “Russian Federation – Measures on the Importation of Live Pigs, Pork and Other Pig Products from the European Union,” upholding a previous ruling that found Russia had illegally embargoed European live pigs, pork, and other pig products in violation of international trade laws. According to the summary, Russia imposed the ban in January 2014 in response to the outbreak of African Swine Fever in the EU and argued that it was in line with the Sanitary and Phytosanitary Agreement and the non-...


| By: Caitlin Behles : March 27, 2017 |

On February 22, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Life Technologies Corp. v. Promega Corp. that supplying one component of a patented multicomponent invention produced outside the United States does not infringe that patent. The Court noted that a supplier may be liable for copyright infringement for supplying “all or a substantial portion of the components of the invention,” and held that the term “substantial” was to be viewed as a quantitative assessment and must be more than one part. The case relates to a DNA genetic testing toolkit patented by Promega, who sued the...


| By: Caitlin Behles : March 27, 2017 |

On February 22, 2017, the Co-Investigating Judges at the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia issued a joint closing order in Case 004/01 dismissing the proceedings against Im Chaem for alleged crimes committed during the Cambodian genocide between 1975 and 1979. According to the press release, the case was dismissed “because according to their evaluation of the evidence collected during the investigation, Im Chaem is not subject to the ECCC’s personal jurisdiction, which means she was neither a senior leader nor otherwise one of the most responsible officials of the Khmer...


| By: Eric A. Heath : March 17, 2017 |

On February 13, 2017, a federal judge in Alexandria, Virginia, issued a preliminary injunction against parts of the Trump administration’s executive order (EO) barring entry of nationals from seven predominately-Muslim countries into the United States. The injunction only applies to Virginia residents, Virginia students, and employees of Virginia schools. Rejecting the government’s argument that the ban was not religiously motivated, the opinion stated that “[t]he Commonwealth has produced unrebutted evidence supporting its position that it is likely to succeed on an Establishment Clause...


| By: Eric A. Heath : March 17, 2017 |

On February 9, 2017, the High Court of Kenya ruled against the attempted closure of Dadaab, the world’s largest refugee camp. According to a news report on the decision, the Court determined that the closure would be “tantamount to an act of group persecution.” The government argued that the camp had lost its humanitarian nature and was used to plan and attack by the Somalia-based al-Shabab terrorist group. Dadaab was established in 1991 for refugee fleeing conflict in Somalia. The government plans to appeal the ruling.