Saturday, April 11, 2009

ECHR Holds Russia Liable for Chechyn Abductions

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) issued decisions in four cases last week holding Russia liable for the abduction and disappearance of six Chechens.  The six Chechen men were abducted from their homes or at work at gunpoint by Russian servicemen and were never heard from again.  The Court presumed them to be dead.  The Court held that Russia had violated the European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, article 2 (right to life), article 3 (inhuman treatment as a result of the mental suffering of the applicants), article 5 (unacknowledged detention), and article 13 (ineffective remedy due to failure to properly investigate the disappearances).  The four cases are: Dokayev (no. 16629/05), Dzhabrailova (no. 1586/05), Gaziyeva (no. 15439/05), and Malsagova (no. 27244/03).  The Court ordered Russia to pay 282,000 euro to the families of the victims.  The decisions are subject to appeal. Click here for the ECHR press realease.

April 11, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Global Legal Skills Conference IV - Georgetown University Law Center - June 4-6, 2009

The Global Legal Skills Conference began in Chicago at The John Marshall Law School.  The first two "GLS" conferences were held there (and the conference is expected to return there in 2011).  The third Global Legal Skills Conference was held in Mexico at the Facultad Libre de Derecho de Monterrey. Click here to see photos from that conference.  (The conference will return to Monterrey February 25-27, 2010.)  The next conference will be held at Georgetown University Law Center on June 4-6, 2009.  Registration links appear at the end of this post.

Panels.  The foundation of the conference is a series of Panels.  Each Panel session will span an initial hour in which panelists can present their ideas and conference participants can offer comments and questions.  After a short break following each Panel, the panelists will reconvene and engage in less formal conversations with interested conference participants.  These post-Panel sessions will continue for as long as interest remains, but no longer than 45minutes.  All Panels will take place in the Hart Auditorium in McDonough Hall.

 

Topic Discussions.   In the one-hour segments between Panels, conference participants may either reconvene with the participants from the prior Panel or attend one of a number of concurrent Topic Discussions.  Topic Discussions will address specific aspects of skills teaching in the global law school curriculum.  Topic Discussions will have different formats depending on the presentation:  some may be single presentations followed by questions; others may be informal discussion groups moderated by one or more conference participants.  All Topic Discussions will provide ample opportunities for conference participants to share ideas (and business cards). 

 

Coffee on the Terrace.   Throughout the conference, conference participants may mingle with colleagues in an outdoor setting  or in the conversation space just outside the Hart Auditorium.  Although conference participants are encouraged to attend all Panels and as many Topic Discussions as possible, enjoying Coffee on the Terrace also offers a valuable conference experience. 

 

Here is s a list of the specific panels and presenters at Global Legal Skills IV

 

Thursday, June 4, 2009

3:00 – 4:00   Conference Registration

 

4:00 – 5:00   Opening Panel:  What are Global Legal Skills, and How should (can, might) Law Schools Teach Them?

Craig Hoffman, Georgetown University Law Center, Washington, DC

Valeria Eliot, University of Denver Law School, Denver, CO

Mary Barnard Ray, University of Wisconsin Law School, Madison, WI

José M. de Areilza, IE Law School, Madrid, Spain

Matt Firth, TransLegal, Innsbruk, Austria; University of St, Gallen, St. Gallen, Switzerland; and Hochschule Liechtenstein, Vaduz, Liechtenstein

 

5:00 – 5:15     Networking Break

 

5:15 – 6:00     Topic Discussions: 

 

1. Coffee on the Terrace: Opening Panel Continued

 

2. Teaching Legal English

 

A Law School Word List.

John Haberstroh, Northwestern University School of Law, Chicago, IL

                                               

Outsourcing of Legal Research and Writing:  Practicing in a Global Legal Community

Mimi Samuel, Seattle University School of Law, Seattle, WA

Anne Enquist, Seattle University School of Law, Seattle, WA

Laurel Oates, Seattle University School of Law, Seattle, WA

                                               

Promoting Reflection in Legal Education and Law Practice:  Research Projects from Mexico, Canada, and the United States

Luis Fernando Pérez Hurtado, Centro de Estudios sobre la Enseñanza y el Aprendizaje del Derecho, Nuevo Leon, México

Diane Labrèche, Université de Montréal, Montreal, Canada

Emily Zimmerman, Drexel University Earle Mack School of Law, Philadelphia, PA

                                   

6:00 – 7:00     Cocktail Reception

 

Friday, June 5, 2009

8:00 – 8:45     Coffee on the Terrace

 

9:00 – 10:00  First Panel

 

What Legal Education Ought To Be Doing To Prepare Students to Practice in the Global Economy.

Carole Silver, Center for the Study of the Legal Profession, Georgetown University Law Center, Washington, DC

T. Alexander Aleinikoff, Dean, Georgetown University Law Center, Washington, DC

Jeff Lehman, Dean, Peking University School of Transnational Law, Shenzhen City, China

Lee Buchheit, Partner, Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen, and Hamilton, New York, NY

 

10:00 – 10:15            Networking Break    

 

10:15 – 11:00            Topic Discussions: 

 

1. Coffee on the Terrace: First Panel Continued

 

2. Teaching Legal English

 

Preparing for the Globalized Law Practice:  The Need to Include International and Comparative Law in the Legal Writing Curriculum

Susan L. DeJarnatt, Temple University Beasley School of Law, Philadelphia, PA

Mark Rahdert, Temple University Beasley School of Law. Philadelphia, PA

 

Globalizing the Curriculum Through the Introduction of International and Comparative Law Issues into Traditionally Domestically Oriented Required Courses

Franklin A. Gevurtz, University of the Pacific McGeorge School of Law, Sacramento, CA

 

Contracts v. Commas:  Creating a Legal English Program for Global Practitioners

Catherine Schenker, American University, Washington College of Law, Washington, DC

                                     

Teaching International LL.M. Students about Plagiarism

Lurene Contento, The John Marshall Law School, Chicago, IL

                                   

11:00 – 11:15            Networking Break

 

11:15 – 12:15 Second Panel

           

Teaching the ‘Right Skills’

José M. de Areilza, IE Law School, Madrid, Spain

Marisa Méndez, IE Law School, Madrid, Spain

James Moliterno, William & Mary Law School, Williamsburg, VA

Gregory J. Marsden, IE Law School, Madrid, Spain            

 

12:15-12:30   Networking Break

 

12:30 – 1:15  Topic Discussions: 

 

1. Coffee on the Terrace: Second Panel Continued

 

2. Teaching Legal English

 

The Core Graduate Legal Skills Program at NYU Law:  Past, Present and Future

Mary Holland, New York University School of Law, New York, NY

Irene Ayers, New York University School of Law, New York, NY

Janet Hoffman, New York University School of Law and Fross Zelnick Lehrman & Zissu, P.C., New York, NY

                       

Prometheus Unbound:  Using the Power of Myth, Folklore, and Legends to Convey Legal Concepts in the Global Classroom

Cynthia M. Adams, Indiana University School of Law, Indianapolis, IN

                                   

Teaching the Common Law in the Arab World

Ann Sinsheimer, University of Pittsburgh Law School, Pittsburgh, PA

Teresa Brostoff, University of Pittsburgh Law School, Pittsburgh, PA

                                   

A Survey of the Steps Schools Take to Acclimate International Students to the U.S. and the U.S. Law Classroom

Deborah B. McGregor, Indiana University School of Law – Indianapolis, Indianapolis, IN

 

1:15 – 2:30     Lunch on your own

 

2:30 – 3:30     Third Panel

 

Creating and Managing CLE Programs for Global Organizations

Tina Stark, Emory University School of Law, Atlanta, GA

Maria Alkiewicz, Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCoy LLP, New York, NY

Sylvia Chin, White & Case LLP, New York, NY

John Claydon, Lex Mundi, Houston, TX     

 

3:30 – 3:45     Networking Break

 

3:45 – 4:30     Topic Discussions: 

 

1. Coffee on the Terrace: Second Panel Continued

 

2. Teaching Legal English

 

Legal English Means Business

Stephanie Schantz, LegalLingua, LLC, Paris, France

 

Strategic competence for professional proficiency in scholarly second language (L2) legal writing

Donna Bain Butler, University of Maryland at College Park, College Park, MD and American University Washington College of Law, Washington, DC

 

Localising commercial materials for learners of Legal English

Matt Firth, TransLegal, Innsbruk, Austria; University of St. Gallen, St. Gallen, Switzerland; and Hochschule Liechtenstein, Vaduz, Liechtenstein

 

All Great Minds Do Not Think Alike: Global Legal Issues Desperately Seeking Global Lawyering

Natalia  C. Walter

 

Dinner (on your own)

 

Saturday, June 6, 2009

8:15 – 9:00     Coffee on the Terrace

 

9:00 – 10:00  Fourth Panel

 

The Future Direction of Global Legal Education in Japan

Jay Klaphake, Ritsumeikan University, Kyoto, Japan

Ken Port, William Mitchell College of Law, St. Paul, MN

Leonardo Ciano, Kansai University of Foreign Studies and Law, Osaka, Japan

Dan Rosen, Chuo University Law School, Tokyo, Japan

Richard B. Parker, Hiroshima Shudo University, Hiroshima, Japan

Colin P. Jones, Doshisha University Law School, Kyoto, Japan

Carl Goodman, Georgetown University Law Center, Washington, DC

 

10:00 – 10:15            Networking Break

 

10:15 – 11:00            Topic Discussions: 

 

1. Coffee on the Terrace: Fourth Panel Continued

 

2. Teaching Legal English (One Panel)

 

Teaching Legal Writing to Foreign Language LL.M. Students

Kenneth Raphael, International University in Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland and Lomonosov Moscow State University, Moscow, Russia

 

International Cooperation in Designing Effective Methods to Prepare Non-Native EFL Teachers for Training and Assessing Legal English Skills

Elena G. Vyushkina, Saratov State Law Academy, Saratov, Russia

Mercedes Urdaneta de González, Universidad Metropolitana, Caracas, Venezuela

 

Some Principles for Introducing Belarusian LL.M. Students to International Legal Discourse

Nina Hovarava, European Humanities University, Vilnius, Lithuania

 

Examinations in Civil Law Countries

Juli Campagna, The John Marshall Law School, Chicago, IL

Radka Chlebcová, Masaryk University, Brno, Czech Republic

                                   

Revision & Reviewing:  How Detailed Instructions Can Assist Students In Revising Their Own Work and Reviewing Peers’ Work

Hillary Burgess, Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY

                                   

11:00 – 11:15            Networking Break

11:15 – 12:00 Fifth Panel

 

Biculturalism: The Need to Be Aware of How Culture and Ethnicity Shape Identities, Learning Styles, and Attitudes toward Conflict Resolution

Katerina Lewinbuk, South Texas College of Law, Houston, TX

Julie M. Spanbauer, The John Marshall Law School, Chicago, IL

 

12:00 – 12:15            Networking Break

 

12:15 – 1:00  Topic Discussions: 

1. Coffee on the Terrace: Fifth Panel Continued

2. Teaching Legal English

Cross-Cultural Negotiation between Lawyer and Lawyer or/and between Lawyer/Party and Mediator

Kathryn L. Mercer, Case Western Reserve University School of Law, Cleveland, OH

 

Cross-Cultural Approaches to Teaching Critical Thinking

Robin Nilon, Temple University Beasley School of Law, Philadelphia, PA

 

A Meeting of Minds: Western Teachers, Eastern Students, Syllogisms, and Finding the Middle Way

Mary Barnard Ray, University of Wisconsin Law School, Madison, WI

 

Negotiating and Mediating in a Global Environment

Catherine Cameron, Stetson University College of Law, Gulfport, FL

Kelly Feeley, Stetson University College of Law, Gulfport, FL

                                   

           

1:00 – 2:30     Lunch; Conference Closing

Global Legal Skills V: What’s Next?

José Roble Flores Fernández, Facultad Libre de Derecho de Monterrey, Monterrey, Mexico

Craig Hoffman, Georgetown University Law Center, Washington, DC

Mark E. Wojcik, The John Marshall Law School, Chicago, IL 

 

You can register to attend the conference using either of the following links.

Click here for a direct link to the agenda, which includes hotel and registration information.  

Or click here for a direct link to the Conference Web PageThe most recent version of the agenda shows up by clicking on “printable PDF brochure.”

And click here to see photos from Global Legal Skills III.  

 

Congratulations to Craig Hoffman and the team at Georgetown University Law Center.  Thanks for continuing this important conference series!  See you all in DC!

 

Mark E. Wojcik

 

 

                  

April 11, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, April 10, 2009

Update on Noriega Extradition to France

The Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals has rejected former Panamanian General Noriega's request not to be extradited to France where he will be put on trial on money laundering charges.  Noriega argued that he could not be extradited to France because of his status as a prisoner of war (POW) under the Geneva Conventions.  The Court of Appeals held that Noriega is precluded from relying on the Geneva Conventions as a private source of rights in a habeas proceeding due to section 5 of the Military Commissions Act of 2006 (MCA).  The Court stated that even though the Geneva Conventions may be self-executing treaties that are part of U.S. domestic law, in this case, the ability of an individual to bring a private cause of action under the Conventions had been superceded by a later enacted statute under the last-in-time rule of Whitney v. Robinson.  The Court further held that even if the Geneva Conventions are self-executing provisions creating privately enfoceable rights, and are not preempted by the MCA, the Geneva Conventions do not prohibit Noriega's extradition on the merits.  Interestingly, the Court does not address the status of the Geneva Convention provisions as either customary international law or jus cogens.  However, given the Court's ruling that the provisions do not assist Noreiga even if he could rely on them, a broader discussion of the status of the Convention's provisions under international law was probably unnecessary.  Noriega has indicated that he will appeal the ruling, so the extradition may not occur just yet.  Click here for the Eleventh Circuit's opinion.

(cgb)

April 10, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Telders International Law Moot Court Competition . . . and the 400th Anniversary of Mare Liberum (the Free Seas) by Hugo Grotius

The 32nd Telders International Law Moot Court Competition begins next week in the Netherlands. The subject of this year's competition is dedicated to the 400th anniversary of Mare Liberum (the Free Seas) by Hugo Grotius (Hugo de Groot)."

This year's competition in The Hague will be The Mare Liberum Case Concerning sovereignty over Abundantia Ridge and other matters (Rosmarus v Urusus). It concerns a claim for damages by Rosmarus after an explosion and leak at an offshore oil rig operated by Urusus and the seizure of an Urusus-flagged fishing vessel by Rosmarus. The problem is available by clicking here..

Hat tip to Douwe Sikkema

(mew)

April 8, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Further Updates on Same-Sex Marriage Around the World

We reported yesterday that Sweden had voted in favor of same-sex marriage instead of civil unions, and that the Iowa Supreme Court ruled last Friday that same-sex couples must be allowed to marry in Iowa. 

Two more developments today.  First, the legislature in Vermont overrode its governor's veto of same-sex marriage legislation, meaning that same-sex couples will now be able to marry in Vermont (a state that previously had civil unions).   Second, the D.C. City Council (which legislates for the District of Columbia) voted to recognize same-sex marriages performed in other jurisdictions.

(mew)

April 7, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

European Parliament Votes to Extend Anti-Discrimination Protections Beyond the Workplace to Cover Goods, Facilities, and Services

European Parliament Nan Hunter at the Hunter of Justice Blog advises us that the European Parliament has voted to extend anti-discrimination protections beyond employment to cover goods, facilities, and services. The anti-discrimination provisions previously only applied to discrimination in the workplace.  Click here to read more on Hunter of Justice.

(mew)

April 7, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

New Zealand Withdraws Candidacy from U.N. Human Rights Council to Allow U.S. to Possibly Win a Seat

United Nations Flag We reported last week on the welcome development that the United States has decided to seek election next month to the U.N. Human Rights Council.  The United States had shunned the Council under President Bush and John Bolton (the U.N. ambassador who proved so controversial that he had to be appointed during a Senate recess because he was unlikely to receive Senate confirmation).  But President Obama and his U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, Susan Rice, have reversed that decision and announced that the U.S. would seek a seat on the Council.

The Council has 47 members who must be elected from regional blocs.  The Human Rights Council replaced the Human Rights Commission, a body widely viewed as being ineffective.  The United States would have to run for one of three open seats in the Western bloc.  Belgium, New Zealand, and Norway were already candidates for those seats.  I have even seen campaign literature from New Zealand for a seat on the Human Rights Council (the campaign literature was in the form of a bookmark placed inside the very useful Guide to Geneva published by the New Zealand Mission).  But after the U.S. announced that it was seeking a seat, New Zealand announced its withdrawal as a candidate.  The New York Times quoted a statement from New Zealand's foreign minister, Murray McCully, to the effect that U.S. membership on the Human Rights Council would be more likely to create positive changes than those that New Zealand could achieve if it were elected.

The United States owes a great debt to New Zealand for this gesture.  Participation by the United States on the Human Rights Council may help that body achieve its intended purpose of promoting and improving the human rights situation throughout the world.  Thank you, New Zealand.  And thank you, United States, for running for a seat on the Council.

(mew)

April 7, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, April 6, 2009

UNHRC Names Goldstone to Investigate Allegations of Israeli War Crimes

On Friday, the UN Human Rights Council announced its appointment of Richard J. Goldstone, former Chief Prosecutor for both the ICTY and the ICTR and former Supreme Court Justice from South Africa, to lead an independent fact-finding investigation into allegations by Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch that Israeli violated international humanitarian law by using the incendiary white phosphorus in civilian areas during the conflict in the Gaza Strip from Dec. 27, 2008 to Jan. 18, 2009.  Also appointed to the fact-finding mission were Professor Christine Chinkin of the London School of Economics and Political Science, Ms. Hina Jilani, Advocate for the Supreme Court of Pakistan, and (ret.) Colonel Desmond Travers (Irish Armed Forces), member of the Board of Directors of the Institute for International Criminal Investigations.  The team will hold several meetings and discussions in Geneva before traveling to the Middle East region to continue its investigation.

(cgb)

April 6, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Pfizer settles with Nigeria in experimental drug case

Nigeria In an update on an earlier post, (see New Developments in ATS Suit Against Pfizer, Feb. 3, 2009), BBC News reported on Friday that Pfizer has reached a settlement with the Kano State in Nigeria in a multi-million dollar lawsuit involving allegations that Pfizer used an experimental oral antibiotic called Trovan on 200 children during a meningitis outbreak without their parents' knowledge or consent.  11 of those children died and 181 suffered injuries.  Pfizer denies the plaintiffs' allegations and claims the children were victims of the disease.  According to the lawyers, Pfizer will pay an undisclosed amount of compensation to the victims and to a local hospital.  This settlement would apparently end the litigation with both the Kano State and the Federal Nigerian government, but it is unclear if it would also end the lawsuit in the United States under the Alien Tort Statute.

(cgb) 

April 6, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Five European Countries Will Now Allow Same-Sex Marriage

Sweden Sweden has recognized same-sex civil unions since 1994.  Civil unions are thought to be the equivalent of same-sex marriage but they have always fallen short in the legal benefits conferred and the social status they enjoyed.  But last week, the Swedish Parliament decided to rectify the situation by voting to allow same-sex marriages in Sweden as of May 1st.  Sweden will become the fifth European country to recognize same-sex marriage:  the other countries are Belgium, the Netherlands, Norway, and Spain.  Individual churches in Sweden will still have the right to decide wheter to perform same-sex marriage ceremonies.

Meanwhile, the Iowa Supreme Court also ruled last week that same-sex couples in that state have the right to marry.  Click here to read a copy of the Iowa Supreme Court decision.

(mew) 

April 6, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Save the Date: One-Day Conference to Explore Change in Legal Education After the Carnegie Report

The John Marshall Law School in Chicago Illinois will hold a one-day conference on Wednesday, July 29, 2009 on "Change in Legal Education After the Carnegie Report."   Scholars, deans, and professors in doctrinal and skills-based disciplines will explore new ways of educating students to meet the expanding challenges of the legal profession.  The event will be just prior to the annual meeting of the American Bar Association.

(mew)

April 6, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Dispute Resolution in Samoa: Court Upholds Banishment Order After Village Rejects a Traditional Apology (Ifoga)

Samoa An article by Marieta Heidi Ilalio in the Samoa Observer reports that the Samoa Land and Titles Court has upheld the banishment ordered against Former Somoan Cabinet Minister Vaiotu Mulitalo Siafausa Vui, his wife, and his children.  They have reportedly been given a week to leave Vaimoso, following a longstanding dispute between Vaiotu Mulitalo and Ali’i ma Faipule (village council) of Vaimoso.  The village had rejected a traditional apology (ifoga) offered on behalf of the former cabinet minister.  We reported on this issue previously in the context of increasing understanding of various forms of dispute resolution used throughout the world. 

The former cabinet minister had no comment about the court's decision upholding the banishment order, but villagers from Vaimoso villagers were reportedly pleased that the court upheld the village's decision.  According to the Samoa Observer, Paramount chief,To’oma’augaune Kelekolio II said that the court's decision was "God’s answer to their prayers."  He said. "thanks should be given to God for meting justice and revealing the truth that the village has long awaited.  We will return to our village and give thanks to God."

The village rejected the traditional apology (ifoga) presented two weeks ago by the family of Vaiotu.  Instead, the village council through a high-ranking matai (chief) banished the former Cabinet Minister and his family from the village.  His offenses appear to be a string of indiscrepancies committed within his wife’s village, including calling a village meeting 13 years ago without authority to do so, taking part in the bestowal of the Manuleleua title on three persons (again without authority), and allegedly brandishing a gun over a land dispute last year.

Vaiotu was banished last month from Vaimoso for "unfounded" statements he made to the media concerning the reason for his ostracism in 1999, but he refused to leave the village.  The village council then reportedly decided to mete a punishment called mu le foaga, in which the person's house and belongings are burned.  Religious ministers and police intervened before his house was burned, and the matter instead referred to Samoa's Land and Titles Court .  The court advised both sides to reconcile, which led to the ifoga that was rejected.  The latest ruling of the court upheld the village's right to order the banishment.

Hat tip to the East-West Center in Honolulu

(mew)

April 6, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Qatar Welcomes Omar al-Bashir to Summit

Omar al-Bashir, the President of Sudan, has been indicted by the International Criminal Court.  But last week he was welcomed warmly in Doha, Qatar for an Arab League Summit.  Since his indictment, al-Bashir has traveled to Egypt, Eritrea, Libya, and now Qatar.  Instead of welcoming him in their countries, each should have helped turn him over to face trial on the charges filed against him. 

Mr. al-Bashir -- if you're reading this blog, how about visiting the Netherlands, home of the International Criminal Court?  There are many people waiting to see you there.

(mew)

April 5, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Global Legal Skills Conference IV

Just a reminder -- the fourth Global Legal Skills Conference will be held June 4-6, 2009 at Georgetown University Law Center in Washington DC.

(mew)

April 5, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

American Society of International Law

ASIL - 80 Percent Congratulations to the American Society of International Law on its successful 103rd annual meeting.  Our friends at the Intlawgrrls Blog have posted the new ASIL officers, and we can't do a better job than what they did.  We'll just send you there for a quick visit.  Click here please.

(mew)

April 5, 2009 | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)