Current Developments

Retaliatory Strikes as a Reaction to Cyber-Attacks?

The recent Israeli Airstrike against HamasCyberHQ from an IHL perspective

Between Friday (3 May 2019) and Sunday (5 May 2019) violence erupted again between Israel and the Palestinians led by governing Hamas in the Gaza Strip. In the course of a severe exchange of violence between the two conflict parties, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) conducted a physical attack countering an offensive cyber operation by Hamas. According to IDF, the air strike was conducted against the Hamas Cyber Headquarter and …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

The climax of the Al-Bashir saga

The ICC’s Jordan judgment

In the judgment of 6 May 2019, the Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Court (ICC) found that Jordan had failed to comply with its obligation to arrest and surrender the (at that time sitting) Sudanese President Al-Bashir during the summit of the Arab League in Jordan. This may be the legal climax of the frustrating Al-Bashir saga, the saga of the wanderlust of an allegedly criminal president of a …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

Controversies in Caracas

Diplomatic asylum: regional customary law or treaty application?

After the failure of the uprising of the Venezuelan opposition, prosecuted politicians and military members are seeking refuge in the diplomatic representations of Brazil, Spain, Argentina and Italy. One might wonder if these incidents give reason to reconsider the existence of a regional customary rule on diplomatic asylum in Latin America. Diplomatic circumstances – controversial interests Diplomatic asylum is not codified, as it was left aside when the International Law …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

Can German courts stop “Hellfire” from Ramstein?

Being a Saarbrücken-based legal scholar traveling regularly to Frankfurt, the sight of the American Ramstein Air Base (or “Ramstein” for short) approaching just before Kaiserslautern is nothing unusual. Most of the time, the high fences on the left side go unnoticed, unless perhaps one of the US Airforce “Globemasters” is casually floating over the highway. This was different on my last trip to Frankfurt – when spotting Ramstein triggered my …

READ MORE →

Forum

Where the Kaiser meets Pinochet

Some thoughts on the role of museums in memorialising international crimes

I recently visited a rather dubious location in Santiago de Chile. A restaurant, owned by a German, designed like a Bavarian beer house, praised by the local press as an ‘authentic German enclave’ in Santiago. There is nothing dubious to this as such of course. But when I entered the place, saw the fence surrounding it and the Prussian flag in its logo, I could not help the feeling that …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

Judge Ozaki’s Case

Moonlighting at the International Criminal Court?

On March 19, 2019, seventeen of the eighteen judges of International Criminal Court (hereinafter ‘the Court’) sat to decide on the fate of Judge Ozaki as a judge of the Court. Back in January this year, Judge Ozaki had requested the Presidency to change her status from a ‘full-time judge’ to a ‘non-full-time judge’ of the Court. The request was granted. Later, in February, Judge Ozaki informed the Court that …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

Setback for the descendants of the Nama and Ovaherero indigenous peoples

A New York Court declines jurisdiction in Rukoro et al. v. Germany

Almost two years after members and descendants of the Nama and Ovaherero indigenous peoples filed a class action complaint against the Federal Republic of Germany in a United States District Court, the New York Court dealing with the case dismissed the complaint on March 6, 2019 for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The plaintiffs have filed a notice of appeal to the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on March …

READ MORE →

BofaxeCurrent Developments

“Give me your money, you tired, poor and huddled masses!”

On the introduction of application fees in U.S. asylum law

On 29 April 2019, the President of the United States of America ordered new restrictions on asylum seekers. The restrictions include a fee for asylum applications. This BOFAX reflects on such a fee against the backdrop of the United States’ obligations under international refugee law, especially the 1967 Protocol relating to the Status of Refugees (1967 Protocol) to the 1951 Refugee Convention. The President of the U.S. gave the order …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

Meilenstein für LGBTIQ*-Rechte

Das Gutachten OC-24/17 des IAGMR und seine Umsetzung in der Region

In den nächsten Wochen wird sich das ecuadorianische Verfassungsgericht zur Ehe für alle äußern müssen. Ein Gericht (Corte Provincial de Justicia de Pichincha) hatte dem Gerichtshof die Frage vorgelegt, ob sich aus einem Gutachten des Interamerikanischen Gerichtshof für Menschenrechte (IAGMR) aus dem Jahr 2017 (Opinión Consultiva OC-24/17) für Ecuador die Verpflichtung ergibt, das Institut der Ehe auch für gleichgeschlechtliche Paare zu öffnen. Vor wenigen Tagen fand eine mündliche Verhandlung statt, …

READ MORE →

Völkerrechtsblog

Das Team stellt sich vor / Introducing our team

Wer steht eigentlich hinter dem Völkerrechtsblog? Anlässlich unseres 5-jährigen Bestehens möchten wir uns vorstellen – und erklären, was uns an der Blogarbeit begeistert. In den nächsten Monaten wird unser Team zusätzliche Verstärkung erhalten, worauf wir uns sehr freuen. Stay tuned! Ever wondered who stands behind Völkerrechtsblog? On the occasion of our 5th anniversary we would like to introduce ourselves – and explain what inspires us to participate in this project. …

READ MORE →

Völkerrechtsblog

Happy Birthday, Völkerrechtsblog!

Today exactly five years ago, our first post went online. To celebrate a birthday with a blog means to celebrate what fills the blog with life: its articles, its authors, its readers, its commentators – and not least the whole editing team whose dedicated work makes Völkerrechtsblog possible. We are extremely happy about how the blog has evolved over the last years. It started off as a small project run …

READ MORE →

BofaxeCurrent Developments

“Nun sag’, wie hast Du’s mit der Gerechtigkeit?”

Zur Antwort des IStGH auf die Gretchenfrage, in Afghanistan Ermittlungen aufzunehmen

Viel ist darüber gesagt worden (s. hier und hier), wie moralisch enttäuschend und politisch besorgniserregend die Entscheidung des Internationalen Strafgerichtshofes (IStGH) ist, keine Situationsermittlung nach Art. 15 Abs. 3 Rom Statut (RS) in Afghanistan zu autorisieren. In diesem Post untersuchen wir die Kernelemente der Entscheidung. Zunächst analysieren wir den Ablehnungsbeschluss der Untersuchung durch die Vorverfahrenskammer aus Gründen von „Interessen der Gerechtigkeit“. In einem zweiten Schritt beleuchten wir die Bedeutung der …

READ MORE →

Call for ContributionsSymposiumThe GDPR as a global standard-setter for data protection

Promise and Peril: The GDPR as a global standard-setter for data protection

The Völkerrechtsblog is happy to announce a forthcoming online symposium on the impact of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) on international law. The GDPR is not the only international legal instrument on data protection but it certainly is one of the most influential ones: Since it has become binding in May 2018 it has influenced several data protection reform processes around the world, inside as well as outside …

READ MORE →

Current Developments

The necessity to develop a Regional Refugee Framework for South Asia

There are more than two and half million refugees in the South Asian countries, with majority of them residing in Pakistan, Bangladesh and India. At the same time, the South Asian countries are the place of origin for at least 3 million refugees, with Afghanistan being the country of origin for nearly 2.5 million refugees. Evidently, there is a significant refugee population in the South Asian countries and considering the …

READ MORE →

Book ReviewResponse

Heroes and theories

A response to Raphael Schäfer

In his post, Raphael Schäfer provides a considerate, careful and kind re-reading of my dissertation on Hermann Mosler and West German international legal scholarship after 1945. Raphael makes, by and large, three critical remarks. First, he indicates that my exploration of alternative conceptions to the practice-oriented method might be a misfit. Second, he wonders whether I overemphasize Mosler’s formative influence on German international legal scholarship. And third, he suggests that I …

READ MORE →

Book ReviewKick-off

Practice as method

Germany’s rehabilitation in and through international law

‘International law is what international lawyers do.’ This statement slightly abridged taken from Martti Koskenniemi’s seminal Gentle Civilizer of Nations, points forthright to one of international law’s key characteristics: it is shaped by practice. This practice – not being a source of international law in itself without supporting opinio juris – is of course first and foremost set by states. On a second layer state practice is to a certain …

READ MORE →