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In recent publications a rising tide of criticism directed against the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) is discernible, principally concerning whether or not the ICTY grants the accused a fair trial. The perceived lack of ability, or willingness, to satisfy the highest standards of human rights concerning the right of accused to a fair trial is regarded as a death-knell both for the broad acceptance of the ICTY's jurisprudence as well as the prospects for a permanent international criminal court. While most of the criticism centres around the interpretation and application of provisions of the ICTY's Statute and Rules of Procedure and Evidence addressing the right to a fair trial, some of it concerns the vigorousness with which ICTY officials insist upon the surrender of indicted persons. With all due respect these commentators, by applying norms that are not wholly applicable, misconceive the threat to the accused's fair trial rights.
The article discusses the two decisions (thus far) of the International Court of Justice in the case concerning Maritime Delimitation and Territorial Questions between Qatar and Bahrain, especially its consideration of when an internationally binding agreement has come into existence. The Court's willingness to infer a legally binding agreement, regardless of the intentions of at least one of the parties, appears to displace the primacy of consent it has emphasized in its earlier jurisprudence. The decision seems to hold states bound by informal commitments, an approach that might inhibit open negotiations between states and undermine genuine attempts to pre-empt disputes or to comply with the obligation of peaceful settlement of disputes.
In recent years, there has been a continous attempt to describe changes in the possibilities for international action in relation to conflict situations. How does the coordination and management of international involvement in post-conflict situations contribute to a lasting peace? The article examines the principle texts associated with peace implementation in the former Yugoslavia, and extracts from these some of the elements of the coordination of multilateral activities. The article places this analysis in the context of past and current research on the question of the coordination of multilateral institutional activities as a first step in the grounded study of the organization and management of international involvement in securing peace in post-conflict situations.
In 1954, following the US explosion of a large thermonuclear device in the South Pacific, Prime Minister Nehru of India led the first international call for a comprehensive ban on nuclear testing. It took until 10 September 1996 for the General Assembly of the United Nations to adopt the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty (CTBT). As at the end of April 1997, it had been signed by 142 states including the five nuclear-weapon states.
The CSCE/OSCE is linked in public opinion to one of the following headings: Helsinki Final Act and Cold War; arms control and disarmament; crisis management and conflict prevention. This picture is not completely incorrect in that it indicates more than 20 years of CSCE/OSCE history. Being no more than a series of conferences from 1973 to 1990, the ‘old’ CSCE attempted to bridge East and West, and it mainly contributed to developing military aspects of security in Europe. Following the collapse of the former Eastern bloc, the ‘new’ CSCE, later renamed the OSCE, was called upon to assist in managing the epochal change involving the resurgence of regional crises, and it has been equipped with a fully developed organizational and instrumental structure to that end. The most prominent examples of CSCE/OSCE activity in the areas of conflict prevention, crisis management, and post-conflict peacebuilding, are places such as Bosnia and Herzegovina, Chechnya, or Albania.
International administrative law deals with legal recourse within public international organizations in respect of conflicts between employees (international civil servants) and the organization itself. Literature in this field of public international law is relatively scarce and jurisprudence is not easily accessible. Following a short survey of the main particulars in international administrative law this article will present a recent case in which the Appeals Board of the European Space Agency (ESA) rendered a decision. It deals with some typical legal issues which play a role in international administrative procedures. For practitioners, in particular, this case is an interesting example, of how international tribunals solve legal questions in respect of jurisdiction and substance.
HAGUE INTERNATIONAL TRIBUNALS: International Court of Justice
On 2 November 1992, Iran filed an application instituting proceedings against the United States in respect of a dispute arising out of the attack on and the destruction of three offshore oil production complexes. In it, Iran contended that these acts constituted a fundamental breach of various provisions of the Treaty of Amity, Economic Relations and Consular Rights between the United States and Iran, signed in 1955.
It is always a pleasure and privilege to address a body of students as they commence their graduate studies. You have climbed the foothills successfully and have reached the first plateau. But there are many peaks ahead, and as you commence your ascent of one of them today, I wish you the very best of luck in reaching the sunlit plateau that lies ahead. When you arrive there, you will no doubt see other peaks which you may wish to climb, because any branch of study reveals ever higher and higher peaks. The higher you go, the more you see. These summits are sometimes even hidden in the clouds. You keep discovering them, and even if their existence is known, they are often unexplored territory. Pathways have to be found through them. That is part of the intellectual excitement you will commence today as you leave the well-trodden paths and begin to carve out pathways for yourselves. I congratulate you and wish you God speed on your journey.
By an application filed on 29 March 1994, Cameroon instituted proceedings against Nigeria, relying on the declarations under Article 36(2) of the Statute of the Court, made by both states without reservations. The dispute, according to the Application, related “essentially to the question of sovereignty over the Bakassi Peninsula”, where, “since the end of 1993”, the Nigerian troops were “occupying several Cameroonian localities”. Cameroon also requested the Court “to determine the course of the maritime boundary between the two states beyond the line fixed in 1975”. In an ‘Additional Application’, filed on 6 June 1994, Cameroon extended the subject of the dispute “essentially to the question of sovereignty over a part of the territory of Cameroon in the area of Lake Chad”, which had become the object of “the official […] claim […] by […] Nigeria quite recently, for the first time”; and also requested the Court “to specify definitely” the whole frontier line from Lake Chad to the sea, and to examine the two Applications as a single case. In its counter-memorial, filed within the prescribed time-limit (18 December 1995), Nigeria raised objections to the jurisdiction of the Court and the admissibility of the Cameroonian claims, whereupon the proceedings on the merits were suspended and the President of the Court fixed 15 May 1996 as the time-limit within which Cameroon might present its observations on the Nigerian objections.
HAGUE INTERNATIONAL TRIBUNALS: International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia
The first person to be sentenced by the United Nations ad hoc International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (Tribunal) was Dražen Erdemović, a member of the Bosnian Serb Army who had pleaded guilty to one count of a crime against humanity – murder – and another of violations of the laws and customs of war – murder. Erdemović was a soldier in the 10th Sabotage Detachment of the Bosnian Serb army and the charges against him arose in connection with the slaughter of Bosnian Muslim civilians in the United Nations ‘safe areas’ of Srebrenica and Potocari.