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 : July 20, 2018 |

On July 19, 2018, Trial Chamber II of the International Criminal Court dismissed (available in French) requests for reparations made by applicants in the case of The Prosecutor v. Germain Katanga for transgenerational harm, which refers to harm passed from parent to child. According to the press release, the Chamber looked at “the progress of scientific studies on the transgenerational transmission of trauma and, in particular, of two theories – epigenetic transmission, which is biological, and social transmission, which is learned.” It went on to review the principle requiring a...


| By: Caitlin Behles : July 19, 2018 |

On July 18, 2018, the Organization of American States (OAS) passed a resolution condemning the violence in Nicaragua and calling on the government to set an electoral calendar. Through the resolution, the OAS condemns “all acts of violence, repression, and human rights violations and abuses committed by police, parapolice groups, and others against the people of Nicaragua” and urges all parties “to participate actively and in good faith in the National Dialogue as a mechanism to generate peaceful and sustainable solutions to the situation unfolding in Nicaragua.” The OAS also requested...


| By: Caitlin Behles : July 10, 2018 |

On July 9, 2018, Eritrea and Ethiopia agreed to a Joint Declaration of Peace and Friendship, which marked a start to normalization of ties between the two states and an end to twenty years of conflict. The Declaration has five main provisions, which state that “war between Ethiopia and Eritrea has come to an end”; the governments will work “to forge intimate political, economic, social, cultural and security cooperation”;  “transport, trade and communications links between the two countries will resume”; “diplomatic ties and activities will restart”; “the decision on the boundary between...


| By: Caitlin Behles : July 09, 2018 |

On July 9, 2018, the UN Security Council passed a resolution to strengthen protections for children in armed conflict. In the resolution, the Security Council condemns all violations of international law regarding recruitment of child soldiers to armed conflict, as well as all violence, abductions, and attacks against children in all situations of armed conflict. The Council made note of the importance of the work of the Special Representative on Children and Armed Conflict and called on “all parties to armed conflict to allow and facilitate safe, timely and unhindered humanitarian access...


| By: Caitlin Behles : June 26, 2018 |

On June 26, 2018, the International Labour Organization (ILO) issued a judgment in A. v. ICC, stating that the International Criminal Court (ICC) was at fault in the Libyan government’s detention of four ICC officials in June 2012 while there on Court business and ordering 340,000 euros in moral damages to two of the individuals. In its determination of damages, the Tribunal considered that the complainant’s detention was a direct result of the ICC’s failure to prepare for the mission and the damage the individuals suffered while in detention in Libya. The award “addresses the...


| By: Caitlin Behles : June 26, 2018 |

On June 26, 2018, the Court of Justice of the European Union ruled in MB v. Secretary of State for Work and Pensions that a member state may not require an individual who has changed gender to annul his or her marriage, which was entered into before changing genders, in order to receive a retirement pension at the age necessary for the gender he or she has acquired. The case concerns MB, who was born male, married a woman, and later underwent sex reassignment surgery, but did not obtain a certificate of recognition of her change of gender, since that would have required her to...


| By: Caitlin Behles : June 19, 2018 |

On June 19, 2018, U.S. Permanent Representative to the UN Nikki Halley announced that the United States was withdrawing from the UN Human Rights Council (HRC). Haley stated that the United States called for reform of the HRC a year ago and “made a good-faith effort to resolve the problems” they saw within the Council, but that progress had not been made since then. In her statement, Haley noted that U.S. complaints include the election of states that are human rights abusers to the Council, the failure to respond to human rights abuses by states on the Council, and the Council’s bias...


| By: Caitlin Behles : June 18, 2018 |

On June 17, 2018, the prime ministers of Greece and the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia signed an agreement regarding the name of the former Yugoslav Republic, which has been a point of contention and troubled relations for decades. The agreement stipulates that the mutually agreed name will be “Republic of North Macedonia” or “North Macedonia,” and that it will be used for all purposes, both domestically and internationally. The agreement stipulates that once the agreement enters into force, the Former Yogoslav Republic of Macedonia will request admission to international...


| By: Caitlin Behles : June 14, 2018 |

On June 14, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Animal Science Products, Inc. v. Hebei Welcome Pharmaceutical Co. Ltd. that U.S. federal courts deciding matters of foreign law should give consideration to a foreign government’s explanation of its law, but that courts are not required to give such submissions conclusive effect. The case concerned a multidistrict class action lawsuit brought by U.S. vitamin purchasers against Chinese vitamin sellers that had agreed to fix vitamin prices and create a supply shortage on exports to the United States in violation of U.S. law....


| By: Caitlin Behles : June 13, 2018 |

On June 13, 2018, the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights released its report titled, “Contribution of Parliaments to the Work of the Human Rights Council and Its Universal Periodic Review.” The report focuses on the role of parliaments in the field of human rights and includes “contains recommendations regarding the setting up of a parliamentary human rights committee and the strengthening of engagement with the international human rights mechanisms, especially the universal periodic review.” Included within this are a draft set of “Principles on Parliaments and Human...