Current Developments

Status: “It’s complicated”

On African leaders’ troubled relationship with international courts

Courts are to many African leaders what models are to soccer stars: they are arm candy, but they are not expected to develop a life of their own, or make anybody look bad in public. Thus, if international courts dare to touch upon issues that actually matter to African elites, they will either be killed off or neutered, or, if this is not possible, states will withdraw from their jurisdiction. …

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Rule of Law Goes GlobalSymposium

No unalloyed good

The AU’s rejection of “unconstitutional changes of government”

Democracy and Africa are two words that rarely appear in the same sentence. If they do, the sentences are usually framed in exhortatory or aspirational terms rather than as statements of facts. Yet even though free and fair elections are still far from being the habitual way of obtaining and transferring political power in Africa, the African Union (AU) has developed an impressive array of instruments that seek to nurture …

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