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 01, 2022 |

On February 24, 2022, following Russia’s attack on Ukraine in the early hours of the morning, both the European Union (EU) and United Kingdom (UK) announced sanctions against Russia.

Specifically, Reuters reports that EU officials have announced that they “[would] impose new sanctions on Russia, freezing its assets, halting its banks' access to European financial markets and hitting 'Kremlin interests’ over its invasion of Ukraine.” The goal of these sanctions is said to push Russia’s leadership to face “unprecedented isolation." More specifically, according to JURIST, the EU froze...


| By: Justine N. Stefanelli : February 28, 2022 |

On February 28, 2022, ICC Prosecutor, Karim A.A. Khan QC, announced his decision to investigate the situation in Ukraine. Mr. Khan notes that, though Ukraine is not a party to the Rome Statute, "it has twice exercised its prerogatives to legally accept the Court's jurisdiction over alleged crimes under the Rome Statute occurring on its territory, should the Court choose to exercise it." He stated that he has reviewed his Office's preliminary conclusions on the matter and has concluded "that there is a reasonable basis to believe that both alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity have...


| By: Justine N. Stefanelli : February 28, 2022 |

On February 26, 2022, the International Court of Justice announced that Ukraine has instituted proceedings against the Russian Federation "relating to the interpretation, application and fulfilment of the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide." In the main, Ukraine argues that Russia has falsely alleged that Ukraine has committed genocidal acts in the Luhansk and Donetsk oblasts of Ukraine which has served as the basis for Russia's "special military operation" against Ukraine. Ukraine denies these allegations and accuses Russia of "planning acts of...


| By: Kehinde Winful : February 24, 2022 |

On February 21, 2022, President Biden signed an Executive Order (E.O.) responding to President Putin’s recognition of the Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics (DNR and LNR), located in Ukraine, as “independent” states. According to the E.O. fact sheet released by the White House, the E.O. prohibits new investment, trade, and financing by U.S. persons to form in those regions and “the importation into the United States, directly or indirectly, of any goods, services, or technology from the so-called DNR or LNR regions of Ukraine,” among other things. Along with sanctions, the E.O. also...


| By: Kehinde Winful : February 18, 2022 |

On February 16, 2022, the Court of Justice of the European Union dismissed an action brought by Hungary and Poland challenging an EU regulation making disbursement of funding to the EU member states conditional on certain requirements, including respect for the rule of law. Specifically, the two states challenged the legal basis for the regulation. According to a press release from the Court, in dismissing the claims, the Court found that: “the regulation is intended to protect the Union budget from effects resulting, in a sufficiently direct way, from breaches of the principles of the...


| By: Kehinde Winful : February 15, 2022 |

On February 12, 2022, the U.S. Secretary of State, the Japanese Foreign Minister, and the Republic of Korea (ROK) Minister of Foreign Affairs issued a joint statement regarding the “critical importance of strong U.S.-Japan-ROK trilateral cooperation as we seek to address the most pressing 21st Century challenges.” The statement focused on the importance of “trilateral cooperation” and emphasized the fact that the “three countries share[d] a common view of a free and open Indo-Pacific, which is inclusive, and shared respect for the rules-based international order.” In the joint statement,...


| By: Kehinde Winful : February 11, 2022 |

On February 9, 2022, The International Court of Justice in Armed Activities on the Territory of the Congo (Democratic Republic of the Congo v. Uganda) issued its judgment, on the questions of reparations, fixing the amount of  compensation “due from the Republic of Uganda to the Democratic Republic of the Congo [DRC] for the damage caused by the violations of international obligations by the Republic of Uganda, as found by the Court in its Judgment of 19 December 2005.”  The judgment falls on the backdrop  of a dispute concerning “acts of armed aggression" perpetrated by Uganda on...


| By: Kehinde Winful : February 10, 2022 |

On February 8, 2022, the European Court of Human Rights in case of Q and R v. Slovenia issued a judgment in favor of two grandparents arguing that the foster permission proceedings regarding their grandchildren had been prolonged and unfair. The Court denied the government's argument that “the restrictions necessitated by the COVID-19 crisis [would] have understandably had an adverse effect on the processing of cases before the domestic courts,” holding instead that COVID-19 restrictions did not absolve the state of responsibility in regards to special diligence to urgent...


| By: Kehinde Winful : January 27, 2022 |

On January 24, 2022, The High Court of Namibia ruled against recognizing same sex marriage for two same sex couples who filed a consolidated application for declaratory relief and constitutional recognition of their same sex marriages in Namibia. In the 62-page decision, the Court held that precedent from the Supreme Court decision in Chairperson of the Immigration Selection Board v. Frank, which held that same-sex relationships are not legal in Namibia, “must be followed by the High Court, even if that decision is wrong.” Despite this holding, The High Court further held that the...


| By: Kehinde Winful : January 21, 2022 |

On January 13, 2022, the United Nations General Assembly adopted Israel's resolution addressing the problem of Holocaust denial. The resolution, “[b]earing in mind that Holocaust denial in its various forms is an expression of antisemitism,” focuses on the remembrance of the Holocaust as a key component in the prevention of further acts of genocide. The resolution continues all U.N. outreach programs on the Holocaust, as well as all relevant U.N. specialized agencies’ development and implementation of programs aimed at countering Holocaust denial and distortion. It also urges member states...