Global South in Comparative Constitutional LawSymposium

Expanding Access to Justice for Socio-Economic Rights Complaints in South Africa

Which Direction Should We Head in?

The South African constitution has been lauded for its inclusion of justiciable socio-economic rights. Yet, making claims flowing from these rights remains inaccessible to many people across the country. This blog post (based on a paper being presented at a conference in Berlin on Constitutionalism in the Global South) seeks to consider the obstacles relating to access to justice for socio-economic rights claims in South Africa and potential solutions. I …

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Current DevelopmentsDiscussionKick-off

The International Arbitration Bill and the future of arbitrations in South Africa

“The vast bulk of Africa-related international arbitration cases are resolved in Europe.” Most treaties concluded by the Republic of South Africa (‘RSA’) do not require the exhaustion of domestic remedies before approaching an international tribunal. The case of Piero Foresti, Laura de Carli and others v. Republic of South Africa (ICSID Case No. ARB(AF)/07/1) (‘Piero Foresti’) has been cited as the case that galvanised the government of South Africa to take …

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DiscussionResponse

Putschists behind Bars?

Regional Criminalization of Unconstitutional Changes of Government in Africa

This contribution results from our cooperation with the journal „Swiss Review of International and European Law“ an discusses an article by Abdoulaye Soma on the international crime of unconstitutional changes of government, which was published in December 2016. The Point of Departure Regionalism continues to increasingly develop in various fields of law. Abdoulaye Soma, who acknowledges the birth of an African international criminal law, analyses one of its specificities: the …

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Current Developments

German Genocide in Namibia before U.S. Courts

Ovaherero and Nama sue Germany over Colonial Injustices – Again

Since October 2016, the German Historical Museum has been dealing with the past and presence of German colonialism in a special exhibition (see here) – for the first time ever. But German colonialism is not only a dusty artefact exposed in some German museum. Instead, it continues to haunt the German State in the form of claims for reparations by the descendants of the victims of colonial injustices. While German …

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Alternative Dispute ResolutionPractitioner's CornerSymposium

From curse to opportunity: Mediation of natural resource conflicts

Since 1946, at least 40 % of intrastate conflicts have been linked to natural resources. Furthermore, conflicts associated with natural resources are more likely to relapse into violence within the first five years of a peace agreement. Fortunately, an increasing number of peace processes and related agreements include natural resource provisions on a direct or indirect basis. For these and other reasons, resource-sensitive mediation and dispute resolution is becoming an …

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Photo. 12. IDPs at Parque Tercer Milenio (May, 2009). L. Eslava.
Discussion

Yes, redressing past wrongs in the present!

A rejoinder to Maximilian Pichl and Mieke van der Linden I fully support Mieke van der Linden’s thesis that the illegal nature of the colonization in Africa, and indeed everywhere else needs to be recognized. This is one way of redressing past wrongs. Just one way, which is why I have to oppose the notion that it is an alternative to claims for reparation. The one might not even be …

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DiscussionResponse

Redressing Colonial Wrongs?

A response to Maximilian Pichl On 12 May 1883, the Germans set foot ashore on the coast of South-West Africa – now known as Namibia. The settlement of Germans on natives’ lands immediately became a fact. The native peoples inhabiting the area, the Herero and the Nama, resisted to the German presence on and expropriation of their lands. As a reaction, the Germans launched a war of extermination during the …

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Photo. 9. Placard used during a march organized during the IDP’s protest: “We are people displaced. We are not criminal” (June, 2009). L. Eslava.
Discussion

Systematische Abwehr

Die Entschädigungspolitik Deutschlands

“Der Vernichtungskrieg in Namibia von 1904 bis 1908 war ein Kriegsverbrechen und Völkermord.” Dieser Satz aus dem Auswärtigen Amt wird als Kehrtwende der deutschen Erinnerungspolitik gewertet. Zum ersten Mal spricht eine deutsche Bundesregierung in Bezug auf die Verbrechen an den Herero und Nama von einem Genozid. Jüngst hatte auch Bundestagspräsident Norbert Lammert die völkerrechtswidrigen Verbrechen im heutigen Namibia benannt. Trotz dieses Eingeständnisses ist die Entschädigungspolitik Deutschlands von einer systematischen Negation der …

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Discussion

The struggle for legislative powers

The need for reform in the East African Community

A power struggle is ongoing in the East African Community – a struggle for legislative power. In the most recent edition of  “Law and Politics in Asia, Africa, and Latin America”, I examine the ongoing tensions on the power to initiate bills in East Africa’s regional integration mechanism. Legislative power is shared between the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA), the legislative organ of the East African Community (EAC), and the …

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Allegra - Transitional Justice

Judicial means and political ends: transitional justice and political trials

Transitional Justice is an important emerging theme in legal anthropology. Völkerrechtsblog will explore this theme through a collaboration with the blog ‘Allegra Lab: Anthropology, Law, Art & World’ and re-post their series ‘Transitional Justice under the anthropological microscope’. There are fascinating parallels and connections between political trials and transitional justice. Both are seen to serve other ends than merely punishing individuals who committed a crime. Often they serve to legitimize …

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