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 : January 31, 2019 |

On January 31, 2019, in the just satisfaction case of Georgia v. Russia (I), the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights ordered Russia to pay compensation to over 1,500 Georgian nationals for violations of Article 4 of Protocol No. 4 (collective expulsion), Article 5 § 1 (unlawful deprivation of liberty), and Article 3 (inhuman and degrading conditions of detention) of the European Convention on Human Rights. The case concerned a judgment on the merits from 2014 where the Court held that the Russian government implemented a coordinated policy in 2006 of arresting,...


| By: Caitlin Behles : January 31, 2019 |

On January 30, 2019, the UN Security Council passed a resolution through which it extended the UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP) until July 31, 2019. The resolution notes that Cyprus is in agreement about the need to extend UNFICYP’s mandate, and the Council welcomed Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot leaders’ “commitment to support the process towards a comprehensive settlement in Cyprus, and the support provided by the Secretary-General and Secretary-General’s Special Representative Elizabeth Spehar.” The Council called upon all parties to actively engage to restart negotiations...


| By: Caitlin Behles : January 24, 2019 |

On January 24, 2019, the European Court of Human Rights ruled (available in French) in Knox v. Italy that Italy had violated the human rights of Amanda Knox, an American who had been studying in Italy in 2007 when her roommate was killed, in handling the proceedings that led to her conviction for malicious accusation. The case concerns the circumstances surrounding Knox’s accusation that a pub manager killed her roommate while she was being interrogated, after which he was found to be innocent and she was sentenced to three years’ imprisonment for making a malicious accusation. As...


| By: Caitlin Behles : January 23, 2019 |

On January 23, 2019, the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled in M.A, S.A. and A.Z v International Protection Appeals Tribunal and Others that an EU member state that has submitted its intention to withdraw from the EU must still accept asylum applicants due to its obligations under the Dublin III Regulation until withdrawal is final. The case concerns a family that lived in the U.K. and then moved to Ireland after their U.K. visas expired, where they applied for asylum. Ireland sought to return the family to the U.K., as applicants may be sent back to the first EU country...


| By: Caitlin Behles : January 21, 2019 |

On January 18, 2019, the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) released a compendium of state and public comments on proposed amendments to ICSID’s procedural rules. The compendium includes all comments sent by states and public stakeholders on the proposed amendments prior to January 15, 2019, and they address the proposals made in the working paper ICSID released on August 3, 2018. The aim of the proposed amendments is “to further modernize, simplify, and streamline the ICSID rules for arbitration, conciliation, mediation and fact-finding,” and they address...


| By: Caitlin Behles : January 18, 2019 |

On January 16, 2019, the UN Security Council passed a resolution in which it created a Special Political Mission, the United Nations Mission to support the Hodeidah Agreement (UNMHA), to support the ceasefire agreement between the Yemeni government and the Houthi militia reached in Sweden in December 2018 regarding the city and port of Hodeidah and the ports of Salif and Ras Issa. The Council gave UNMHA an initial mandate of six months and determined that it “will lead and support the Redeployment Coordination Commission tasked with overseeing the ceasefire, redeployment of forces and mine...


| By: Caitlin Behles : January 18, 2019 |

On January 15, 2019, the Trial Chamber I of the International Criminal Court (ICC) acquitted Laurent Gbagbo and Charles Blé Goudé of all charges of crimes against humanity allegedly committed in the context of post-electoral violence in Côte d'Ivoire in 2010 and 2011. The two were accused of four charges of crimes against humanity: murder, rape, other inhumane acts, and persecution. The majority found that the Prosecutor had not proven several elements of the crimes charged, namely a “common plan” meant to keep Gbagbo in power, including crimes against civilians “pursuant to or in...


| By: Caitlin Behles : January 17, 2019 |

On January 15, 2019, the U.K. House of Commons voted by a large margin to reject Prime Minister Theresa May’s deal setting out the terms of Britain’s withdrawal from the EU. Members of Parliament voted 432 to 202 against the plan, resulting in the largest defeat for a sitting government in British history. Under the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018, the House of Commons is required to approve of a negotiated withdrawal agreement between the U.K. and EU before it can be implemented. Currently the U.K. is still planning to leave the EU by the March 29, 2019, deadline that was triggered...


| By: Caitlin Behles : December 21, 2018 |

On December 21, 2018, the UN Security Council passed a resolution that welcomed the meeting between the Yemeni government and the Houthis convened by the Special Envoy in Stockholm from December 6–13, 2018, and endorsed “the agreements reached by the parties on the city and governorate of Hodeidah and the ports of Hodeidah, Salif and Ras Issa; an executive mechanism on activating the prisoner exchange agreement; and a statement of understanding on Taiz, as set out in the Stockholm Agreement.” The Council called upon the parties to implement the Stockholm Agreement and authorized the...


| By: Caitlin Behles : December 20, 2018 |

On December 20, 2018, the UN Support Mission in Libya (UNSMIL) and the UN Human Rights Office jointly released a report titled, “Desperate and Dangerous: Report on the human rights situation of migrants and refugees in Libya,” which details severe human rights violations faced by migrants and refugees within Libya as well as in attempting to make the Mediterranean Sea crossing on the northern coast. The report documents abuses faced by migrants and refugees as soon as they enter Libya, including “unlawful killings, torture and other ill-treatment, arbitrary detention and unlawful...