Sunday, July 12, 2020

Happy Lawyers' Day!

Diadelabogado Happy Lawyers' Day!

Hat tip to the Facultad Libre de Derecho de Monterrey (Mexico)

July 12, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, July 10, 2020

Animal Law Update

Fight for Elephant Rights Continues in New York

The NhRP expects to argue its appeal this fall.

New York, NY, July 10, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Today the Nonhuman Rights Project (NhRP) filed its appeal in its habeas corpus case on behalf of Happy, a 49-year-old wild-born Asian elephant the NhRP maintains is unlawfully imprisoned in a Bronx Zoo exhibit.

The NhRP is asking the New York Supreme Court, Appellate Division, First Department to recognize Happy’s common law right to bodily liberty, reverse the Bronx Supreme Court’s dismissal of Happy’s habeas petition, and remand the case with instructions to order Happy’s release to The Elephant Sanctuary in Tennessee: “This Court has the duty to safeguard and uphold the fundamental common law liberty interest of autonomous beings,” writes the NhRP in its appellate brief. “As Happy is an autonomous being, this Court must recognize her right to bodily liberty protected by habeas corpus and order her freed.”

In February of 2020, Bronx Supreme Court Justice Alison Y. Tuitt issued a decision in Happy’s case after over 13 hours of oral argument, writing that the Court “agrees [with the NhRP] that Happy is more than just a legal thing, or property. She is an intelligent, autonomous being who should be treated with respect and dignity, and who may be entitled to liberty … the arguments advanced by the NhRP are extremely persuasive for transferring Happy from her solitary, lonely one-acre exhibit at the Bronx Zoo to an elephant sanctuary.”

However, Justice Tuitt dismissed Happy’s habeas petition because “regrettably … this Court is bound by the legal precedent set by the Appellate Division when it held that animals are not ‘persons’ entitled to rights and protections afforded by the writ of habeas corpus.”

In 2018, as favorably cited to by Justice Tuitt, New York Court of Appeals Justice Eugene M. Fahey issued a concurring opinion in which he urged his fellow judges to treat the question of nonhuman animals’ rightlessness as “a deep dilemma of ethics and policy that demands our attention … The issue whether a nonhuman animal has a fundamental right to liberty protected by the writ of habeas corpus is profound and far-reaching. It speaks to our relationship with all the life around us. Ultimately, we will not be able to ignore it.” Justice Fahey also criticized the Appellate Division decisions in the NhRP’s chimpanzee rights cases, making clear they were wrongly decided on the grounds that the NhRP’s clients aren’t members of the human species and cannot bear legal duties.

“The First Department has the opportunity to do the right thing by correcting these serious errors of law and giving Happy a chance to experience the freedom, peace, and dignity of a sanctuary where formerly imprisoned elephants, including those traumatized by solitary confinement in zoos and circuses, have been able to heal and thrive,” said Elizabeth Stein, an attorney with the NhRP and Happy’s local counsel.

In 2005, Happy made history as the first elephant to demonstrate self-awareness via the mirror test. In 2018, she made history again as the first elephant to have a habeas corpus hearing after the NhRP initiated her case, which draws on centuries of common law precedent and robust scientific evidence of elephants’ cognitive, emotional, and social complexity. Five of the world’s most respected elephant experts, including Dr. Joyce Poole and Dr. Cynthia Moss, have submitted unrebutted affidavits in support of Happy’s case.

In May of this year, the Chief Justice of the Islamabad High Court in Pakistan described Happy as an “inmate” at the Bronx Zoo. Relying in part on Justice Tuitt’s decision and Justice Fahey’s opinion, Chief Justice Athar Minallah affirmed “without any hesitation” the rights of nonhuman animals and ordered the release of an elephant from a zoo to a sanctuary.

The Wildlife Conservation Society continues to claim Happy doesn’t get along with other elephants despite abundant evidence to the contrary, including her relationship with an elephant named Grumpy who was euthanized after two other elephants held in the exhibit fatally attacked her.

Alongside the NhRP’s litigation, its grassroots advocacy campaign on behalf of Happy has gained significant momentum and drawn the support of such influential public figures as Queen guitarist Brian May, New York City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, and animal advocates in New York and around the world. Meanwhile, a petition calling for Happy’s release from solitary confinement has over a million signatures and continues to grow.

The NhRP expects to argue its appeal this fall. The Wildlife Conservation Society has until August 12th to file its reply brief.

Download the NhRP's appellate brief here. For a detailed timeline of Happy’s case and court filings, visit this page. To download the above image of Happy, visit this page (credit: Gigi Glendinning).

CASE NO./NAME: THE NONHUMAN RIGHTS PROJECT, INC. on behalf of HAPPY, Petitioner, v. JAMES J. BREHENY, in his official capacity as Executive Vice President and General Director of Zoos and Aquariums of the Wildlife Conservation Society and Director of the Bronx Zoo, and WILDLIFE CONSERVATION SOCIETY (Appellate Case No. 2020-02581)

Hat tip to Lauren Choplin of the Nonhuman Rights Project. The Nonhuman Rights Project is the only civil rights organization in the United States working through litigation, legislation, and education to secure fundamental rights for nonhuman animals.


July 10, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, July 2, 2020

Loyola New Orleans is Hiring a Westerfield Fellow

Position:  Westerfield Fellow, Loyola University New Orleans College of Law; start date: August 2020 

Description: This position is designed for individuals pursuing a career in law teaching and seeking to gain law teaching experience, while being afforded time to devote to scholarly writing and publication.  Applicants should have strong academic credentials, writing experience in a judicial clerkship, law practice, or both, and excellent written and oral communication skills.  The Fellow will be responsible for teaching legal reasoning, legal research, legal writing, and oral advocacy skills to two sections of first-year law students in a three-credit hour class each semester.  The Fellow will teach his or her own classes, but will have the benefit of working under the guidance of an experienced director and with experienced professors in a program in which the director and the professors teaching the courses coordinate the content and pace of the courses.  The Fellow will also have student teaching assistants to aid with courses.  The Fellow will have a faculty mentor in addition to the other professors teaching in the program.  One-year contracts may be renewed.  Salary is competitive with fellowships of a similar nature.  Westerfield Fellows have been successful in obtaining tenure track positions at a number of ABA accredited law schools.

About the School: The College of Law is located in a largely residential area of New Orleans, one of the most culturally diverse cities in the United States, with unique cuisine, numerous museums and historical sites, and a flourishing arts community.  New Orleans is also the seat of the United States Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, the Federal District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana, the Louisiana Supreme Court, and the Louisiana Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, as well as other lower courts.   The College of Law has a student population of approximately 500 students, over forty faculty members, active clinics that have spearheaded numerous social justice reform efforts, and summer programs in Europe and Central America.  Its location in Louisiana, one of the world’s best known “mixed jurisdictions,” provides unique opportunities for comparative and international law scholarship.

Loyola University New Orleans is an educational institution dedicated to fostering intellectual achievement, personal development, and social responsibility, and it is committed to the human dignity and worth of every person.  Loyola University New Orleans strives to create and maintain a working and learning environment in which individuals are treated with dignity, decency, and respect. The University acknowledges and values individual differences, including, but not limited to, the dimensions of race; color; sex; national origin; age; religion; gender identity; transgender status; sexual orientation; ethnicity; disability status; and marital status and citizenship status. We recognize that diversity enriches our social interactions and intellectual lives, and we strongly encourage applications from individuals who will bring diversity to the College of Law.

Dean Louis Westerfield was the first African American dean of the College of Law.  He is remembered for promoting diversity and excellence in legal education.

Review of applications will continue until the position is filled.  Applications should be emailed to 

Hat tip to Mary Garvey Algero.


July 2, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, June 28, 2020

Snapshot of the Covid-19 Pandemic

The estimated global tally of COVID-19 cases today passed 10,000,000 (ten million).


June 28, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, June 18, 2020

World Refugee Day

Rohingya refugeesJune 20 is World Refugee Day. Sadly, the number of persons who are forcibly displaced from their homes and who seek refuge in another country continues to grow to record levels. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) estimates the number of forcibly displaced persons to be almost 8o million - twice the number just a decade ago. New regional and international solutions are desperately needed for this growing crisis. For more information, go to the UNCHR website. 

Photo of Rohingya refugees from NYT.


June 18, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, June 1, 2020

Convention Against Torture Case: Nasrallah v. Barr

Earlier today, the U.S. Supreme Court decided a case involving the Convention Against Torture, Nasrallah v Barr.

Nasrallah is a citizen of Lebanon who became at lawful permanent resident of the U.S. in 2006 at age 18. In 2011, he pled guilty to two counts of receiving stolen property in interstate commerce. The government sought to deport him based on his convictions. The Immigration Judge (IJ) determined that one of his convictions constituted a crime involving moral turpitude (CIMT) under 8 U.S.C. § 1227a(2)(A)(1) and a particularly serious crime. However, the IJ also determined that Nasrallah had established a clear probability that he would be persecuted and tortured if returned to Lebanon because of his Druze religion and Western ties, so the IJ granted him deferral of removal under the Convention Against Torture (CAT).  On appeal, the Board of Immigration Appeals held that the IJ erred in granting Nasrallah a deferral and ordered his removal. Nasrallah appealed to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, arguing that the IJ acted with prejudicial bias and that the BIA erred in finding his crime to be a CIMT as well as a particularly serious crime and in overturning his deferral of removal. The Eleventh Circuit denied the appeal on the ground that the court lacks jurisdiction to review factual findings underlying the removal order under pursuant to 8 U.S.C. § 1252(a)(2).

On appeal, the Supreme Court agreed with Nasrallah that federal courts have jurisdiction to review factual findings underlying an agency’s denial of deferral of removal under CAT. However, the review is the highly deferential substantial evidence standard. As a result, Nasrallah will have another opportunity to seek relief from removal to Lebanon. 


June 1, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, May 28, 2020

International Day of UN Peacekeepers

May 29 is the International Day of United Nations Peacekeepers and this year's theme is Women in Peacekeeping: A Key to Peace. This year is the 20th anniversary of UN Security Resolution 1325 on Women, Peace, and Security, which calls for the expansion of the role and contribution of women in UN peacekeeping operations. Since the first UN peacekeeping operation in 1948, over 1 million men and women have participated in 72 UN peacekeeping missions. For more information about the essential role of women peacekeepers, go here.


May 28, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Reminder: Webinar with New ECHR President Judge Róbert Ragnar Spanó: The Principle of Judicial Independence and the Democratic Virtues of Human Rights Law

ECHR Judge SpanoHere's a reminder that Judge Róbert Ragnar Spanó, the new President of the European Court of Human Rights, will speak on Friday, May 29, 2020, about "The Principle of Judicial Independence and the Democratic Virtues of Human Rights Law." He took office as President of the ECHR on May 18, 2020.

The talk will be followed by questions from the online audience, chaired by iCourts Director, Professor Mikael Rask Madsen.

Judge Spanó is an Icelandic-Italian jurist who was previously Parliamentary Ombudsman of Iceland and Dean of the University of Iceland Faculty of Law.

The live stream will be freely accessible (no registration required) on the iCourts website and will take place May 29th at 14:00 CET (which we calculate to be 7:00 a.m. Central Time for our blog readers in the United States).

iCourts is the Danish National Research Foundation's Centre of Excellence for International Courts. It is a research centre dedicated to the study of international courts, their role in a globalizing legal order and their impact on politics and society. Click here to learn more about iCourts.

Click here for more information about the European Court of Human Rights.

Hat tip to Sofie Meinicke at iCourts.


May 27, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Guest Blog Post: The Short-term and Long-term Legal Impact of COVID-19 on Globalization

We are pleased to share the following guest blog post, authored by Amin R. Yacoub and Mohamed S. El-Zomor

The COVID-19 pandemic has created a turbulence in the international legal order. Most nations have paused their international legal obligations in order to preserve their national legal order. The pandemic has forced many developing countries to halt their bilateral Foreign Direct Investments to preserve their essential national utilities. While the short-term legal impact of the pandemic on globalization seems to be devastating on many levels, we argue that – on the long term – the pandemic might have a positive impact on the international legal order and globalization. Indeed, the observable short-term legal impact of the pandemic seems to give credit to Marti Koskenniemi’s skepticism on global governance, yet we argue that the sudden reversal of the globalization movement during the pandemic does not render humanity’s progression towards globalization undesirable. In other words, countries only adopted nationalistic measures during the pandemic to preserve their national orders not to adopt nationalization as an aim per se – an innate need for globalization still exists among nations.

Short-Term Political and Legal Impact of COVID-19

On the short term, the political and legal impact of COVID-19 seems devastating. Most national courts all over the world have been closed alongside key judicial mechanisms for the protection of human rights, such as the European Court of Human Rights and the immigration courts of the US .

            Many international treaties are currently put on hold – presumably under the international law’s state of necessity or force majeure – in order to pursue protective nationalist measures to preserve public health against the pandemic. For instance, despite Canada’s latest ratification of USMCA (NAFTA’s substitution), COVID-19 has disrupted the USMCA implementation in accordance with the agreed timeline.

First, most countries have closed their borders to maintain public health: a protective step that might be interpreted as a tendency towards nationalism. By the same token, some of these restrictions may constitute a breach to international law, leading to a fragmentation of the international community.

Second, the recently updated NAFTA (“USMCA”) – although currently valid on paper – is on pause as the US and Canada have closed their borders, except only for medical supplies. Further, the US intends to place military troops near the border as part of the efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Third, the Foreign Direct Investment (“FDI”) has been drastically impacted by COVID-19. As countries had taken major protective steps to avoid the privatization of essential governmental sectors, foreign investments have been faced with restrictive screening in the EU countries. Moreover, Italy and France have adopted a protective nationalistic approach against foreign capital to preserve public order.

Finally, most nations have unwillingly breached their Bilateral Investment Treaties (“BITs”) as part of their necessity measures against the spread of COVID-19. For instance, Italy had more than 70 bilateral investment treaties in force that might have been simultaneously breached. BITs damage claims might be brought by foreign investors against Italy once the pandemic crisis is over. The damage claims could be rooted on several breaches of BITs’ obligations such as Fair and Equitable Treatment (“FET”), Full Protection and Security (“FPS”), direct and indirect expropriation, and national treatment. However, such claims would likely be defended on a state of necessity ground of International Law, especially that the World Health Organization (“WHO”) has considered the current pandemic a state of necessity.

Marti Koskenniemi has long been a skeptic of the effectiveness of global governance. In his article Global Governance and Public International Law, Koskenniemi stated that: “[n]ational governments govern at home, the commission governs in Europe, and the UN administers a world society – “the international community”… perhaps the thickness of government diminishes as we proceed from the domestic to the global.” The pandemic had revealed that global governance also diminishes as we proceed from the global (e.g., World Health Organization “WHO”) to the domestic (e.g., “US”) especially in times of uncertainty. Put simply, preserving and promoting national interests take priority over complying with global governance when faced with existential threats. The current nationalistic wave against globalization - as a reaction to the pandemic - gives some credit to Koskenniemi’s argument against the effectiveness of global governance, at least for the short term. Lastly, globalization is directly reliant on global governance: it needs global governance as a tool to grow and have an impact on the international playground. Since global governance seems to be seriously threatened by the pandemic, humanity’s progress towards globalization has been jeopardized temporarily.  

Long-Term Political and Legal Impact

The long-term political and legal impact of COVID-19 cannot be easily predicted. However, we can speculate what the international legal order would be like in the aftermath of the pandemic.

First, nations would re-open their borders right after the pandemic returning the international legal order to its pre-existing condition. The EU would re-validate the free movements of goods and workers among its member-states. The recently renewed NAFTA would kick-start trade between the US and Canada. The international legal order would be reinstated as soon as the pandemic is over.

Second, most countries would witness a rise in the foreign direct investment on the long run. This is an inevitable result of the currently wrecked economy that resulted from the pandemic. In order to compensate the huge economic losses, countries would have more tendency to encourage foreign direct investments – especially developing countries that do not have enough economic means to drag their own economies out of the pandemic wreckage.

Third, International Investment Tribunals would develop more understanding of other important international law obligations: human rights obligations, the margin of appreciation of States, the public policy argument of States, force majeure, full protection and security, and state of necessity. The reason behind this lies in the humanitarian lens the pandemic had forced into the Arbitral Tribunals’ table and the investor’s world. Adopting such humanitarian lens would likely influence Arbitral Tribunals to create the desired balance in the ISDS system, which is sometimes criticized as a business focused Alternative Dispute Resolution system.

Theoretically, we argue that the world will witness a long-term rise in globalization. As Immanuel Kant had contemplated in his Perpetual Peace: “[e]ven if it were found that the human race as a whole had been moving forward and progressing for an indefinitely long time, no-one could guarantee that its era of decline was not beginning at that very moment… For we are dealing with freely acting beings to whom one can dictate in advance what they ought to do, but of whom one cannot predict what they actually will do . . .” We agree with Robert Howse and Ruti Teitel’s interpretation of Kant’s work. What Kant suggests – according to Howse and Tietel – is that even the greatest reversals of progress do not render it impossible to restart progress towards globalization and cosmopolitanism as a crucial means to advance perpetual peace. By way of analogy, we argue that the reversal of the globalization progress during the pandemic does not render it impossible for nations to renew such progress on the long run. Perhaps, it would not be a luxury, but a necessity to renew the globalization progress in the aftermath of the pandemic’s economic, legal, and social wreckage.

The language of the UN Secretary General on COVID-19 reveals that the world would likely renew its globalization progress after the pandemic. He stipulated that: “[w]ith the right actions, the COVID-19 pandemic can mark the beginning of a new type of global and societal cooperation.” Indeed, we predict that the pandemic might influence the conclusion of new international treaties to deal with unexpected world catastrophes and pandemics in order to guard the international legal order in the future.

In conclusion, notwithstanding the short-term legal impact of the pandemic on nations that had forced them to adopt nationalistic measures against globalization, a new atmosphere of cooperation among nations would arise from the current pandemic. Consequently, countries would have more tendency towards globalization after the pandemic through concluding new international agreements and treaties on the long run as that might be the first step towards healing socially, legally, and economically.

Amin R. Yacoub and Mohamed S. El-Zomor

May 26, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

AALS CFP: “Comparing Data Protection Structures in the European Union and the United States

The Association of American Law Schools' Sections on European Law and Defamation and Privacy Law are convening a jointly organized panel session for the 2021 AALS Annual Meeting entitled, “Comparing Data Protection Structures in the European Union and the United States,” which will be held in San Francisco in January 2021. One or two speakers will be selected for the program from the CFP submissions.

Panel Description

Data privacy, consumers rights, and the integrity of various political, financial and health systems are pressing contemporary issues. With the explosion of social media, data breaches, surveillance, and unauthorized sharing of information between devices occur on a daily basis and raise troubling questions about the security of consumer information and legal protections. This session explores data protection structures in different jurisdictions. The panelists will offer comparative perspectives on approaches adopted in Europe and the United States concerning data collection and privacy. It has been two years since the EU implemented the General Data Protection Regulation. Now, is the perfect time to reflect on the GDPR, its goals, accomplishments, and limitations. In contrast to the EU, the U.S. follows a sectoral approach, deploying a variety of laws and regulatory bodies, at the federal and state levels, to address consumer privacy and data security. The Federal Privacy Act of 1974, The Federal Trade Commission, and the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018 (CCPA) are examples of U.S. institutions and laws designed to deal with these issues.

The panel will explore questions, including, but not limited to: Do these regulatory regimes function effectively to protect the personal data and privacy of individuals? Has the absence of a general consumer data privacy law at the federal level in the U.S. hindered its ability to adequately protect consumers? How is consent treated under both the EU and U.S. regimes? What constitutional or other legal issues are present in data privacy debates? Are human rights addressed adequately?

Submission Details and Due Date

One or two papers will be selected from the submissions for presentation at the joint program in January. Abstracts of no more than one page in length should be emailed by July 15, 2020 to: Kristen Barnes at In the subject line please write: Submission for AALS Main Panel 2021. Authors selected will be notified no later than September 25, 2020. As is usual with the AALS meeting, authors of selected papers will be responsible for paying their registration, hotel, and travel expenses associated with participation in the AALS meeting.

Hat tip to Randolph Robinson II


May 26, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Does the US-Guatemala Asylum Cooperative Agreement Deny Asylum in Violation of International Law?

HRWHuman Rights Watch and Refugees International have raised serious concerns that the United States-Guatemala Asylum Cooperative Agreement (ACA) denies asylum seekers the opportunity to apply for asylum in violation of international law. In a joint report, “Deportation with a Layover: Failure of Protection under the US-Guatemala Asylum Cooperative Agreement,” they allege that the ACA allows the United States to send non-Guatemalan asylum seekers, such as those from Honduras and El Salvador, to Guatemala without the opportunity to apply for asylum in the United States. The report further alleges that Guatemala does not qualify as a safe third country because it is unable to provide a full and fair procedure for these persons to apply for asylum or similar protection.  According to the report, the United States transferred 939 persons to Guatemala between November 2019 and March 2020, when the agreement was suspended due to COVID-19.

Under Article 33 of the 1951 Refugee Convention, to which both the United States and Guatemala belong, parties are prohibited from returning a person to a territory where his or her life or freedom would be threatened on account of race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group (non-refoulement).  To comply with this obligation, states must have a process to determine whether a person is a refugee before expelling that person or returning the person to another country.


May 20, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Webinar with ECHR President Judge Róbert Ragnar Spanó: The Principle of Judicial Independence and the Democratic Virtues of Human Rights Law

ECHR Judge SpanoJudge Róbert Ragnar Spanó, the new President of the European Court of Human Rights, will speak on Friday, May 29, 2020, about "The Principle of Judicial Independence and the Democratic Virtues of Human Rights Law." He took office as President of the ECHR on May 18, 2020.

The talk will be followed by questions from the online audience, chaired by iCourts Director, Professor Mikael Rask Madsen.

Judge Spanó is an Icelandic-Italian jurist who was previously Parliamentary Ombudsman of Iceland and Dean of the University of Iceland Faculty of Law.

The live stream will be freely accessible (no registration required) on the iCourts website and will take place May 29th at 14:00 CET (which we calculate to be 7:00 a.m. Central Time for our blog readers in the United States).

iCourts is the Danish National Research Foundation's Centre of Excellence for International Courts. It is a research centre dedicated to the study of international courts, their role in a globalizing legal order and their impact on politics and society. Click here to learn more about iCourts.

Click here for more information about the European Court of Human Rights.

Hat tip to Sofie Meinicke at iCourts.


May 19, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, May 18, 2020

Call for Papers: ASIL Midyear Meeting and Research Forum

The American Society of International Law (ASIL) will host its Midyear Meeting and Research Forum at Case Western Reserve University School of Law in Cleveland, OH on October 30-31, 2020. ASIL is calling for submissions of scholarly paper proposals for the 2020 ASIL Research Forum. The Research Forum, a Society initiative introduced in 2011, aims to provide a setting for the presentation and focused discussion of scholarly papers related to international law. All ASIL members are invited to attend the Forum, whether presenting a paper or not. 

Papers may be on any topic related to international and transnational law and must be unpublished. Interdisciplinary projects, empirical studies, and jointly authored papers are welcome. To be selected for the Research Forum, interested presenters should submit an Abstract of no more than 500 words in length summarizing the scholarly paper by May 18, 2020. Abstracts should be submitted on the ASIL website here. The Abstracts will be considered via a blind review process. Notifications of acceptance will go out in June. 

Abstracts of papers accepted for presentation will be assembled into thematic panels. The organizers welcome volunteers to serve as discussants who will comment on the papers. All authors of accepted papers will be required to submit their completed paper four weeks before the Research Forum, Thursday, October 1. Accepted authors must commit to participating on both Friday, October 30 and Saturday, October 31, 2020. Papers will be posted in advance of the Forum on the Midyear Meeting App, accessible only by participants in the Meeting. 

Presenters will have the option (subject to editorial approval) of being published in the spring 2021 double volume, ASIL Research Forum issue of the Case Western Reserve Journal of International Law. To qualify for publication in the Case Western Reserve Journal of International Law, papers must be between 15-30 single spaced pages, include citations in Bluebook format, and be submitted by September 7, 2020.

The Society plans to hold the Research Forum in person if it is possible to do so consistent with the safety and well-being of attendees in light of the 2020 coronavirus pandemic. ASIL will explore alternative arrangements should it be impossible or inadvisable for an in-person gathering to take place in October, and if the public health situation prevents individual presenters from attending, ASIL will work with them to arrange alternative options for remote participation.



May 18, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, May 16, 2020

Vance Legal Writing Competition on Customs and International Trade Law

Miami Law is now hosting the Andrew Vance Memorial Essay Competition in cooperation with the Customs and International Trade Bar Association (CITBA).  The competition awards cash prizes to two students, and there's  a publication opportunity in the Miami International and Comparative Law Review. Students can be in a J.D. or LL.M. program.

This year's deadline is May 22, 2020, which is probably too soon for most students. But you never know who might have a paper ready to submit. Click here for the details.

Hat tip to Kathleen Claussen at the University of Miami School of Law


May 16, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, May 14, 2020

Attend the 2020 ASIL Virtual Annual Meeting

Like many organizations, the American Society of International Law (ASIL) has moved its annual meeting online. The virtual event features 40 substantive sessions on a wide range of international law topics and 150 speakers over the course of two days, June  25-26, 2020. Registration fees have been reduced by 25% and students can attend free. More information may be found here.


May 14, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, May 1, 2020

Louisiana State is Hiring

The Louisiana State University Paul M. Hebert Law Center seeks to hire an Advocacy Fellow to assist in the administration and coaching of its Advocacy Programs. The Advocacy Programs include the Law Center’s moot court, trial advocacy, and alternative dispute resolution external competition teams, as well as the Law Center’s internal advocacy competitions and voluntary skills development workshops. Reporting to the Director of Advocacy Programs, this position is responsible for the continued development and administration of a robust set of student skills development opportunities.

The Advocacy Fellow provides case preparation assistance to participants, assists in the recruitment and training of coaches and judges, plans and implements voluntary skills training opportunities and events, creates at least one full trial, appellate, or dispute resolution case file, and organizes competition registration and team travel arrangements. The Advocacy Fellow also acts as a secondary coach where needed. 

Applicants must have a J.D. from an ABA-accredited law school. Prior experience as a competitor and/or coach in the LSU Law Center’s Advocacy Programs or a similar law school skills training and competition program is strongly preferred.  This is a full-time position. The term of appointment for the Advocacy Fellow is one year and will begin in Summer 2020.  For exceptional performance, a Fellow may receive reappointment for a second year. 

Interested candidates should submit a cover letter, résumé, and the names and contact information of at least three references to LSU Human Resources by visiting Questions should be directed to Prof. Jeff Brooks at


May 1, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Mexico and the European Union Negotiate a New Free Trade Agreement

The Mexican law firm Ernesto Velarde Danache, Inc. advises us that Mexico and the European Union have successfully concluded negotiations concerning a new, updated Free-Trade Agreement. The Trade Agreement must now be approved and signed by the representatives of both parties and then submitted for legislative approval. (mew)

May 1, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

ABA Annual Meeting to be Held Only Online

In response to the evolving COVID-19 pandemic, the ABA Board of Governors has decided that the 2020 annual meeting will be entirely virtual.

The 2020 ABA Annual Meeting is scheduled for July 29 to Aug. 4.  More information on the virtual 2020 ABA Annual Meeting will be available at

May 1, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Saudi Arabia ends use of death penalty for juveniles

Saudi Arabia issued a royal decree earlier this week ending capital punishment for individuals who were under the age of 18 at the time of commission of the crime for which they are convicted (except in cases under the counter-terrorism law). Instead of the death penalty, the maximum penalty for juveniles will be 10 years at a juvenile detention facility.

According to Amnesty International, Saudi Arabia executed a record number 184 people in 2019. Amnesty International has called on Saudi Arabia to eliminate the death penalty for all persons. 

Article 6.5 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights prohibits the imposition of the death penalty on persons under the age of 18. Saudi Arabia has not yet joined the ICCPR.


April 29, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, April 25, 2020

Trial for Accused Syrian War Criminals Begins

While the world has been distracted by the coronavirus, the process of international justice continues to slowly creak along.  On Thursday this week, a trial began in Germany for Syrians who are suspected of war crimes. A former high-ranking Syrian intelligence officer, Anwar Raslan, accused of crimes against humanity, will face survivors of his alleged torture. A second Syrian man will also be tried for aiding and abetting. 


April 25, 2020 | Permalink | Comments (0)