Read On! Integrity in International Justice

The International Nuremburg Principles Academy has published its latest volume in the Nuremburg Academy Series, a book entitled “Integrity in International Justice,” edited by Morten Bergsmo and Viviane E. Dittrich.

The book considers integrity as a legally binding standard in international courts, while including perspectives from other disciplines such as philosophy, history, psychology and religion. It argues that respect for integrity among high officials and staff members is a prerequisite for international courts and other international organizations to fulfil their mandates.

The authors include the prominent judges Hans Corell, Richard J. Goldstone, Hanne Sophie Greve, Ivana Hrdličková, Erik Møse and David Re, and 37 other leading actors and experts in the field of international justice.

You can find more information and download the e-book version of the book on the Nuremberg Academy website.

Write On! Call for Papers –PALESTINE YEARBOOK of INTERNATIONAL LAW

PALESTINE YEARBOOK OF INTERNATIONAL LAW: Call for Papers (Volume XXII)

This installment of Write On!, our periodic compilation of calls for papers, includes calls to present at the Palestine Yearbook of International Law, as follows:

► The PALESTINE YEARBOOK OF INTERNATIONAL LAW (PYBIL) has opened an invitation for submissions for Volume XXIII. The PYBIL is particularly interested in critical approaches to public international law, and welcomes submissions in relation to Palestine. 
In addition, the PYBIL welcomes articles on critical legal studies, in particular, those emanating from Third World Approaches of International Law (TWAIL) as well as Critical Race Theory (CRT). With respect to CRT, the PYBIL is interested in articles that explore the relationship between power, race, and international law in theory and practice. Articles employing CRT would be welcome in all areas of international law. This peer-reviewed volume will include articles, case commentaries, and book reviews. 

Submissions are due by January 15, 2021. For more information, click here.

Go On! Launch of the Nuremberg Academy Lectures

Nuremberg Academy - YouTube

Go On! makes note of interesting conferences, lectures, and similar events.

► The International Nuremberg Principles Academy announced open registration for the Nuremberg Academy Lectures, which will be held as a Zoom webinar on November 24, 2020, at 7 p.m. CET. Professor Philippe Sands, British-French human rights lawyer, Professor of Law at University College London and author of seventeen books on international law, will deliver the inaugural lecture, where he will will discuss the origins of international criminal law in light of the 75th anniversary of the opening of the International Military Tribunal in Nuremberg and address contemporary developments of international criminal law. The lecture will be followed by a discussion moderated by Dr. Viviane Dittrich, Deputy Director of the Nuremberg Academy. Prior registration is required. Click here for details.

Go On! International Online Conference: Youth, Climate Change, and the European Court of Human Rights

Go On! makes note of interesting conferences, lectures, and similar events.

►  Tampere University and the ALL-YOUTH research project, funded by the Strategic Research Council under the Academy of Finland, and in collaboration with the Finnish Human Rights Centre, announced open registration for Youth, Climate Change, and the European Court of Human Rights, which will be held on virtually, on Friday, November 27, 2020, 14:00-17:00 (EET). The conference will reflect on and debate current topics in the field of environmental human rights and youth climate litigation. The goal is to contribute to the dialogue between the academic community and civil society, especially the youth of environmental activists who want to hold States responsible for their failure in protecting the environment, an omission that has been threatening human rights.  Speakers will include:

  • The UN Special Rapporteur on Human Rights and the Environment, David R. Boyd 
  • The President of the Supreme Administrative Court of Finland, Kari Kuusiniemi 
  • Professor Daphina Misiedjan, International Institute of Social Studies from the Erasmus University of Rotterdam 
  • Professor of Law, Cinnamon Piñon Carlarne, Ohio State University, Moritz College of Law 
  • Gerry Liston, Legal Officer at Global Legal Action Network 

The event is free of charge, but all participants are required to register by 20 November 2020 via the conference website. Click here for details.

Go On! World Peace Through Law Award & 20th Anniversary Virtual Gala

July 17, 2014 Crimes Against Humanity Initiative Fulfilling the Dictates of  Public Conscience: Moving Forward with a Convention

Go On! makes note of interesting conferences, lectures, and similar events.

►  The Whitney H. Harris World Law Institute, at Washington University in St. Louis School of Law announced open registration for their upcoming World Peace Through Law Award and 20th Anniversary Virtual Gala, which will be held on November 18, from 1:30-4:15 pm CT. The Harris Institute will be presenting Professor Patricia Viseur Sellers with the 2020 World Peace Through Law Award.  Click here for details https://law.wustl.edu/faculty-and-research/whitney-r-harris-world-law-institute/the-world-peace-through-law-award/.

Write On! Call for Papers: International Essay Writing Competition & Conference on Financial Regulatory Law

This instalment of Write On!, our periodic compilation of calls for papers, includes calls to publish in RMLNLU Law Review Journal & RMLNLU Law Review Blog , as follows:

The Journal Committee at Dr. Ram Manohar Lohiya National Law University, Lucknow (RMLNLU) in collaboration with the Regstreet Law Advisors is organising the RMLNLU-Regstreet Law Advisors Conference on Financial Regulatory Laws, as part of the 8th RMLNLU International Legal Essay Writing Competition & Conference on Financial Regulatory Laws on March 14, 2021. The Conference will be held virtually.

Authors must be pursuing their five year integrated LL.B. (Hons.) course / three year LL.B. course / LL.M. from any recognised university in India and equivalent law degree, abroad for the academic year of 2020-2021 to be eligible to participate in the Competition.

The sub-themes for paper submissions are:-

  • Regulatory hurdles to the growth of a successful IFSC in India
  • Financial regulations and the innovation in fintech
  • Direct overseas listing
  • Resolution of financial firms
  • Analysis of the stock exchange responses to curb the pandemic caused volatility
  • Social stock exchange
  • Trading member default

Deadline for the paper submission is January 17, 2021. A maximum of top five entries will be selected for the virtual conference to be organised on March 14, 2021.

Click here to know more about the competition.

Click here to read the brochure of the competition.

Write On! Call for Papers: Michigan Law Junior Scholars Conference

This instalment of Write On!, our periodic compilation of calls for papers, includes calls to present at Michigan Law Junior Scholars Conference, as follows:

The University of Michigan Law School invites junior scholars to attend the 7th Annual Junior Scholars Conference, which will take place virtually on April 16-17, 2021. The conference provides junior scholars with a platform to present and discuss their work with peers, and to receive detailed feedback from senior members of the Michigan Law faculty. The Michigan Law Journals have also agreed to give serious consideration to publish selected papers. The Junior Scholars Conference is intended for academics in both law and related disciplines. Applications from graduate students, SJD/PhD candidates, postdoctoral researchers, lecturers, teaching fellows, and assistant professors (pre-tenure) who have not held an academic position for more than four years, are welcomed.

Applications are due by January 4, 2021.

Further information and the full call for papers can be found at the Conference website.

On the Job! Legal Officer (Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice – Firearms)

Job Opening

The UNODC Global Firearms Programme is looking for a Legal Officer (Firearms). Please find the full job listing here.

Posting Title:Legal Officer (Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice – Firearms), P4
Job Code Title:CRIME PREVENTION AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE OFFICER
Department/Office:United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime
Duty Station:VIENNA
Posting Period:12 October 2020 – 25 November 2020
Job Opening Number:20-Drug Control and Crime Prevent-UNODC-142459-R-Vienna (G)

Org. Setting and Reporting

This position is located in the Implementation Support Section (ISS) of the Organized Crime and Illicit Trafficking Branch OCB), Division for Treaty Affairs (DTA) of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) in Vienna. The incumbent will work under the direct guidance and supervision of the Senior Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Officer / Global Firearms Programme (GFP) Coordinator in ISS, and the overall supervision of the Chief of Section.

For more information on UNODC, please visit our website at www.unodc.org.Responsibilities.

Fore more information on the job opening, please visit: https://careers.un.org/lbw/jobdetail.aspx?id=142459&Lang=en-US.

Go on! 2020/21 CELI Peace Talks “International Law OUTSIDE THE BOX”

Reading and Reimagining Equality, 20 November 2020

2020/21 CELI Peace Talks “International Law OUTSIDE THE BOX”

Reading and Reimagining Inequality is the first seminar of International Law Outside the Box, the 2020/2021 CELI Peace Talks, the Annual Series of Leicester Law School’s Centre for European Law and Internationalisation. The seminar features a stellar panel of speakers: Professor Gerry Simpson (LSE), Professor Vasuki Nesiah(NYU), Dr Francesca Haig (University of Chester) and Dr Loveday Hodson (University of Leicester). The panel shall discuss the value of literary approaches to international law and social justice, looking at how literature and literary approaches to the world can offer insight into in/equality, including poverty of the (international legal) imagination.

About the CELI Peace Talks:

What is the role of public international law and public international lawyers in contemporary society and across the globe? Is international law “fit for purpose” to address the contemporary challenges to its capacities, authority, ambit, relevance and vision in the 21st century? To many of the worlds’ inhabitants, human and non-human, it seems as if “the “world is on fire” – whether the cause of this impression be inter alia the pandemic, climate change, war, persecution, poverty, fascism, displacement or occupation. In light of the ubiquity of oppression and suffering on the planet, do traditional positivist or black-letter approaches to international law need to be revisited, rethought or refashioned, and if so, to what extent, and to what end(s)? 

This Annual Speakers Series hosted by Centre of European Law and Internationalisation (CELI) at Leicester Law School (UK) explores answers to these pressing questions by thinking about international law “outside the box”. Throughout 2020-2021, we will hold a series of panels of leading scholars and practitioners offering “Outside the Box” thinking about international law. The “Outside The Box” theme will offer innovative ways to rethink and reimagine international law in light of contemporary challenges, including re-examining the actors, practices, sources, institutions, purposes, effectiveness and enforcement of international law. 

The series will host six panels the following salient themes of international legal scholarship and practice: 

1) food, the right to sustenance, and the distribution of resources; 

2) racism, postcolonialism, and the inherent whiteness of mainstream international law; 

3) “inclusion”, “diversity” and the quest for representation; 

4) literature and literary approaches to international law-making; 

5) international relations its interplay with international law; 

6) assassination and the role of violence in the development and maintenance of international law. 

Each panel will be carefully curated and open to questions from the audience. By offering non- orthodox readings and understandings of international legal subjects, issues and approaches based on their experience and scholarship, our speakers will lead the audience outside the often hidden boxes in the field and practice of international law.

Date and time: Friday, 20 November 2020, 18:00-19:30 (GMT)

Venue: Online on Microsoft Teams

The event is free of charge and open to all, but prior registration is required. You will be sent a link to join the event upon registration.

To Book: Please register at https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/reading-and-reimagining-equality-tickets-127030338161

Contact: For further information please email the convenors, Dr Vidya Kumar and Dr Paolo Vargiu.

Open Letter to the African Union: Africa’s Opportunity to Address the Gender Diversity Problem at the International Court of Justice

Women of Africa are increasingly demonstrating their resilience in global leadership, financial institutions, international criminal law, the United Nations, the World Bank and the International Criminal Court to name a few. But there is more that needs to be done— the November 11, 2020 elections to the bench of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) provides a unique opportunity for member-states of the African Union to once again demonstrate their support for gender equality by supporting the candidature of Judge Julia Sebutinde of Uganda—the first and only African woman to serve on that court.

Currently, women represent only 20% of the judges on the bench of the ICJ. As the ICJ is poised to celebrate its 75th Anniversary in April 2021, it is noteworthy that historically, out of the 108 judges since the court was established, only four have been women. To date, the principal judicial organ of the United Nations remains the most gender-imbalanced international court in the world. This imbalance has prompted scholars and advocacy groups such as the Gender Equality Campaign (GQUAL) to engage in advocacy for diversifying the ICJ bench. On November 11, 2020, elections will be held to fill five judicial positions on the ICJ. Of the eight candidates on the ballot for this election, three are women; Julia Sebutinde of Uganda, Hanqin Xue of China, and Maja Seršic, of Croatia.

In 2012, Judge Julia Sebutinde made history as the fourth woman to be elected to the bench of the ICJ in over 60 years of the Court’s existence. Judge Sebutinde’s election was remarkable for reasons beyond her gender: she was also the first woman from the African continent to be elected to the ICJ, compared to the 14 African male judges who sat on that court before her. As an international judge, Judge Sebutinde’s appointment signaled the intersections of race, gender, geographical location, and other identities that women from non-western societies must navigate. Judge Sebutinde’s journey to the ICJ, was as a combination of an unwavering ambition to become an international judge, and professional experiences spanning 41 years, having has served as a judge and jurist at national and international levels, including as a judge of the High Court of Uganda and the Special Court for Sierra Leone. 

Judge Sebutinde’s multiple and intersecting identities of race, gender, geography, as well as her professional experience  are reflective of her journey to the international bench, a journey which she describes as ‘different threads that were woven into a kind of cloth, the kind of cloth that I now am’ (quoted in Judge Julia Sebutinde: An Unbreakable Cloth,” in International Courts and the African Woman Judge: Unveiled Narratives.

Judge Sebutinde’s journey as the first woman from an African country to sit on the ICJ is symbolic of the increasing number of African women judges sitting on international courts since 2006.  As one of the most gender-imbalanced international courts, the upcoming elections in November to fill the five vacant seats on the bench of the ICJ provides a unique opportunity for the Africa group of States to back the nomination and election of a strong candidate—who just so happens to be a woman!

Judging Julia Sebutinde

On Merit

Judicial selection processes to international courts aspire to meet the highest standards of merit, integrity, professionalism, equal opportunity, inclusion, and diversity. Julia Sebutinde possesses a total of 41 years of experience as a judge and jurist at national, regional, and international levels. Her expertise spans public international law, international humanitarian law, international human rights law, the law of the sea, environmental law, and international criminal law. As a judge at the ICJ since 2012, Judge Sebutinde has contributed to 40 Judgments, 65 Orders of Court, and an Advisory Opinion. Besides her judicial functions, she has served on the Court’s essential committees, including the Chamber of Summary Procedure, the Budgetary and Administrative Committee, and Head of the Information and Communications Technology Committee of the Court. As an incumbent judge, she has experience in the internal operations of the Court. She has initiated key internal reforms that have contributed to strengthening the ICJ internally, including internal justice for staff members and the modernization of the Court’s processes.

Judge Sebutinde’s knowledge and grasp of international law builds on her experiences as Judge of the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) (2005-2010); and Presiding Judge of Trial Chamber 2 of the Special Court for Sierra Leone (2007-2008 and2010-11). Judge Sebutinde’s contribution to jurisprudence is captured by international law professor Nienke Grossman when she notes;

Among Judge Sebutinde’s most noteworthy individual opinions during her time on the Special Court are a separate concurring opinion regarding “forced marriage” in the AFRC Trial and a dissenting opinion on whether to accept a late brief by defense counsel in the Taylor trial. Judge Sebutinde’s separate concurring opinion in the AFRC trial explored the legal contours of “forced marriage” and highlighted the testimony of expert witnesses on the subject.

Judge Sebutinde has written many declarations and separate opinions appended to the judgments of the ICJ, thus contributing to its jurisprudence, including a separate opinion to the Chagos Advisory Opinion, in which she elaborated on the right to self-determination in the context of decolonization as having attained peremptory status (jus cogens) under customary international law, from which no derogation is permitted.

Judge Sebutinde has delivered numerous papers and public lectures and holds several international awards, including two Honorary Doctorates, in recognition of her contribution to international peace and justice. Having served on the ICJ bench since 2012, Judge Sebutinde brings with her the knowledge and skills of an incumbent judge who has demonstrated that she understands the internal workings of the Court and has contributed to international law through her judicial opinions.

On Process

Fourteen male African judges preceded the arrival of Sebutinde as the first African woman judge at the ICJ. The practice has been for the African Union (AU) to endorse the re-election bid of incumbent judges contesting for a second term. Judge Julia Sebutinde is the first and only African woman on the Court, and the first judge whose bid for a second term has not been formally endorsed by the AU and is instead challenged by two male competitors. While AU endorsement does not necessarily mean an automatic election, the fact that the first woman candidate’s bid for re-election has not been endorsed by the AU, calls for further reflection on promises of gender equity in representation. The AU must honor the customary practice of supporting incumbent candidates for re-election by openly endorsing the re-election bid of the incumbent candidate who just so happens to a woman.

On Gender Equality

Gender equality does not mean that women should be nominated or endorsed at the expense of men. The ICJ’s infamous historical record as one of the most gender-imbalanced courts in the world requires deliberate action in addressing this disparity. All the former male African judges of the ICJ received the AU’s endorsement, and each one served two terms (unless they died in office or voluntarily resigned). Why is the AU refusing to endorse the first and only African woman judge? The lack of endorsement by the AU should send a chilling signal to all member States, international organizations, civil society advocacy groups, women’s organizations, and all individuals interested in gender diversity, inclusion and equal opportunities for all sexes. The AU must affirm its commitments on gender equality contained in multiple legal instruments at the regional and international levels. The election of international court judges should be of concern to all members of the international community. As a principal judicial organ of the United Nations, the bench of the ICJ should symbolically reflect the world’s gender diversity.

The AU must hold true to the progress within the AU system as demonstrated by the election of women judges to the ACtHPR—making it the most gender-balanced court in the world currently. In electing judges to the ICJ, the AU and individual African states have been presented with a unique opportunity to showcase to the world that qualified African women candidates have equitable and strong support from member-states of the AU to serve in international organizations. The AU must live up to its commitment to promoting gender equity, equality, inclusion, and diversity as espoused in the Maputo Protocol. The AU must continue the progress made, as seen in the number of women represented in the African Commission and the African Court (ACtHPR). The African Union must live up to its espousal of gender equality by endorsing the incumbent candidate’s re-election—who has the merit, comes with a wealth of international law experience, and just so happens to be a woman!

**An earlier version of this post was published on the blog of the Institute for African Women in Law.