Friday, November 30, 2018
Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), will deliver the Kissinger Lecture in Foreign Policy and International Relations at the Library of Congress on December 4, 2018. The event will be webcast live for viewing around the world.
Ms. Lagarde will speak about the changing landscape of the international system and the need for continued creativity in U.S. leadership in order to tackle the world’s shared economic challenges.
This event will begin with an introduction by Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden. Dr Hayden will be followed by Lagarde's keynote address and an interview by Margaret Brennan of Face the Nation on CBS.
The program will be streamed LIVE on Tuesday, December 4, beginning at 6:30 p.m. Eastern Time (United States):
Thursday, November 22, 2018
The Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption is an international treaty that facilitates intercountry adoptions. The United States signed the Convention in 1994, and the Convention entered into force for the United States on April 1, 2008. Click here to read the full text of the Convention.
The Convention applies to all adoptions by U.S. citizens habitually resident in the United States of children habitually resident in any country outside of the United States that is a party to the Convention (Click here for a list of countries that are parties to the Hague Adoption Convention). Adopting a child from a Convention country is similar in many ways to adopting a child from a country not party to the Convention, but there are some key differences. Click here to read more about the Hague Child Adoption Convention.
Tuesday, November 20, 2018
The 13th Global Legal Skills Conference is jointly organized by The John Marshall Law School in Chicago and Melbourne Law School in Australia. It will be held December 10-12, 2018 in Melbourne, with walking tours of Melbourne before the conference on December 9 and a cultural excursion after the conference on December 13.
The conference features more than 100 speakers from 20 countries. The conference program can be viewed at https://glsc.jmls.edu/2018/program/ This is the first time that the conference is being held in Australia. (Previous conferences have been held in Chicago, Washington DC, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Italy.)
If you are attending the conference, remember to check whether you need a visa to visit Australia. https://glsc.jmls.edu/2018/visas/
If you're not attending the conference this year, please join us next year when The John Marshall Law School and Arizona State University School of Law will hold the conference in Phoenix, Arizona on December 12-14, 2019. Information about that GLS-14 conference will be available after we finish the conference in Melbourne, but please save the dates now.
Extraordinary Chambers of the Courts of Cambodia Convticts Two Former Khmer Rouge Leaders of Genocide, Crimes Against Humanity, and Grave Breaches of the Geneva Conventions of 1949
The Trial Chamber of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) has convicted former senior Khmer Rouge leaders NUON Chea and KHIEU Samphan of genocide, crimes against humanity, and grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions of 1949. The crimes were committed at various locations throughout Cambodia during the Democratic Kampuchea period from April 1975 to January 1979.
The Trial Chamber announced a summary of its findings and the disposition in Case 002/02 at a public hearing on November 16, 2018, sentencing the Accused, NUON Chea and KHIEU Samphan to life imprisonment.
The Chamber will deliver full written reasons for its judgment at a later date.
Evidentiary hearings in the trial of Case 002/02 commenced with opening statements in October 2014 and concluded in January 2017. The trial, including closing statements, lasted for a total of 283 hearing days. The Trial Chamber heard the testimony of 185 individuals: 114 witnesses, 63 Civil Parties, and 8 experts. The trial was subject to considerable public interest, with 82,780 persons attending the hearings.
The Chamber’s Main Findings
The Trial Chamber found that NUON Chea, Deputy Secretary of the Communist Party of Kampuchea (CPK) and KHIEU Samphan, the Head of State of Democratic Kampuchea, participated in a joint criminal enterprise together with other senior leaders of the CPK, to implement a rapid socialist revolution, which involved the commission of crimes. NUON Chea and KHIEU Samphan were convicted of committing, through participation in a joint criminal enterprise: genocide of the Vietnamese ethnic, national, and racial group; various grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions; and the crimes against humanity of murder; extermination; enslavement; deportation; imprisonment; torture; persecution on political, religious and racial grounds; and the other inhumane acts of attacks against human dignity and through conduct characterized as enforced disappearances, forced transfer, forced marriage, and rape within the context of forced marriage.
Both Accused were also convicted of aiding and abetting the crime against humanity of murder at worksites, cooperatives and security centers for deaths resulting from living conditions at these crime sites, including lack of food, water and medical care as well as the imposition of hard labor. NUON Chea alone was convicted for the crime of genocide by killing members of the Cham ethnic and religious group on the basis of his superior responsibility. The crimes were committed at various crime sites throughout the country, including at the Tram Kak Cooperatives, Trapeang Thma Dam Worksite, 1st January Dam Worksite, Kampong Chhnang Airfield Construction Site, S-21, Kraing Ta Chan, Au Kanseng and Phnom Kraol Security Centres.
NUON Chea was found to have acted as POL Pot’s “right hand,” being involved in all major decisions of the CPK. He played a key role in designing, implementing and disseminating the CPK’s criminal polices and propaganda, for example as principal author of the regime’s propaganda magazine, Revolutionary Flag, and contributed to crimes committed by CPK cadres. NUON Chea was also found to have participated in purges and in the running of S-21 Security Centre.
KHIEU Samphan was found to have encouraged, incited, and legitimized criminal policies and to have contributed to crimes committed by CPK cadres. He personally instructed cadres on implementing criminal policies, and was responsible for training CPK cadres. Furthermore, the Chamber found that KHIEU Samphan contributed to nationwide purges and approved the delegation of the “right to smash” within lower ranks of the CPK. KHIEU Samphan was also responsible for widely-disseminated speeches in support of CPK policies, which the Chamber found contributed to the commission of crimes. Crimes committed – CPK policies
The Chamber found that the CPK established cooperatives and worksites, forcing the population to work in inhumane conditions, without adequate food, clean water, or adequate medical care. Tens of thousands of Cambodians were enslaved and large numbers of them died due to the imposition of these conditions. The Chamber further found that the CPK established security centers in order to identify, arrest, isolate, and execute individuals considered to be enemies by the regime. The wives and children of so-called enemies were likewise executed.
The Trial Chamber also found NUON Chea and KHIEU Samphan responsible for CPK policies targeting Vietnamese, Cham, Buddhists and former Khmer Republic officials and their families. The Chamber found that between 1975 and 1976, there was a nationwide policy to expel Vietnamese people living in Cambodia. Specific instances of Vietnamese civilians being killed on a massive scale were also established. Hundreds of Vietnamese civilians and soldiers were killed at S-21 Security Centre after being tortured and subjected to inhumane conditions. Buddhist symbols were destroyed, and monks were forcibly disrobed across various communes. Monks were labeled “worms” or “leeches,” and the use of pagodas for religious purposes was disallowed. Cham religious and cultural practices were banned throughout
Cambodia. Mosques were dismantled and Korans were burnt. Cham people were forced to eat pork and prevented from worshiping and speaking their native language. In addition, the Chamber found that Cham civilians were arrested and killed on a massive scale at the Wat Au Trakuon and Trea Village Security Centres. Khmer Republic officials were also targeted for arrest and killed along with their families.
Finally, the Chamber found NUON Chea and KHEU Samphan responsible for a nationwide policy of identifying individuals to be forcibly married, often to strangers. After group weddings, couples were monitored by militiamen and compelled to have sexual intercourse with their new spouses. CPK cadres took the role of parents in the selection of suitable spouses, forced couples to marry, and to produce children for the purpose of increasing the country’s population.
The Trial Chamber found that 3,865 Civil Parties as well as a large number of additional victims suffered immeasurable harm as a consequence of the crimes of which NUON Chea and KHIEU Samphan were convicted. The Chamber therefore endorsed the implementation of 13 reparation projects that recognize the harm suffered by Civil Parties and other victims.
In the first trial concerning the Accused, Case 002/01, NUON Chea and KHIEU Samphan were convicted by the Trial Camber on 7 August 2014 of crimes against humanity in relation to forced movements of the population and sentenced to life imprisonment for those crimes. The sentences of life imprisonment in Case 002/01 were affirmed on appeal. The Trial Chamber merged the life sentences imposed in Case 002/01 and Case 002/02 to form a single life sentence for each of the Accused. On 27 February 2017, the Trial Chamber terminated the proceedings concerning all facts set out in the Closing Order for Case 002 not included in Case 002/01 or Case 002/02.
Adapted from a Press Release from the Extraordinary Chambers of the Courts of Cambodia.
Monday, November 19, 2018
The United Nations Security Council lifted sanctions on Eritrea last week, ending a nine-year period of isolation of the country and rewarding the country's improved relations with neighboring Ethiopia and other countries. The Security Council unanimously voted to end an arms embargo, travel ban, and a freeze on assets held by Eritrea and its political leaders. The sanctions had been first imposed in 2009 after the United Nations determined that Eritrea was arming and training militants who sought to undermine the government of Somalia, although Eritrea itself denied that accusation. For more information, see Carol Morello, U.N. Lifts Sanctions on Eritrea, Ending Nearly a Decade of Isolation, Washington Post, Nov. 15, 2018, at A11.
Sunday, November 11, 2018
The Association of American Law Schools (AALS) will hold its 2019 annual meeting in New Orleans from January 2-6, 2019. Early bird registration rates are good until November 14. Visit the AALS Annual Meeting website to see the program and to register.
Thursday, November 8, 2018
Benjamin Ramos, a founding member of the National Union of People's Lawyers, was murdered on Tuesday as he left his office. The New York Times reported that he was shot three times by men riding on motorcycles. Mr. Ramos had been representing the poor, environmental activists, and political prisoners. His work had angered police and the military. Crusading Philippine Lawyer Murdered, N.Y. Times, Nov. 8, 2018, at A6.
The Arctic Environmental Governance Project at the University of California Irvine continues its program on governance with a study of the need for additional instruments for the environmental future of the Arctic. The project welcomes participation in a short survey. There are many different views on the need for more and different instruments and initiatives. Because this question is one of centrality to policymakers, the Project is soliciting expert thoughts.
The survey should take about ten minutes. Click here to take the short survey of your views on the Arctic.
Hat tip to Dr. Joseph F.C. DiMento, Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of California Irvine
Sunday, November 4, 2018
Lewis F. Matuszewich was recognized by the Illinois State Bar Association for twenty years of service as editor of The Globe, the newsletter of the ISBA Section on International and Immigration Law. Lewis is a partner at Matuszewich & Kelly LLP, a law firm located in Crystal Lake, Illinois.
The United Nations in Zimbabwe is reaffirming that people living with HIV and AIDS need to continue with antiretroviral (ARV) therapy to manage their infections, after a local preacher reportedly claimed that he had received divine revelation of an herbal cure.
According to media reports, the Zimbabwean minister notified his congregation in the capital Harare on Sunday of the “cure” for HIV and AIDS. He claimed that a healing plant had been revealed to him by God, sparking a media outcry.
The nation’s largest newspaper, the Harare Herald, reported that his claims were scientifically baseless, and that the Zimbabwean Government was actively discouraging the purchase of unapproved medicines.
Zimbabwe saw some 30,000 AIDS-related deaths in 2016, with well over one million people living with HIV accounted for in the same year, according to statistics from UNAIDS; the agency working towards ending the global pandemic as a public health threat, by 2030.
Those desperate for a cure should not abandon their ARV therapy, the UN advised. Any researchers working in the field, the statement said, are urged to subject their treatments to the Zimbabwe Ministry of Health for proper clinical trials and procedures.
Until a cure is verified, effective ARV drugs can control HIV infections and help prevent transmission, “so that people with HIV, and those at substantial risk, can enjoy health, long and productive lives,” Dr. Gasasira added.
As of the end of last year, 87 percent of Zimbabweans living with HIV were aware of their status, and 74 percent of them were receiving treatment, the report states.
The United Nations is supporting Zimbabwe in its fight to eradicate HIV and AIDS as a public health threat by 2030, starting with informing citizens of their status and working to suppress infection through treatment.
Adapted from a U.N. Press Release
U.S. State Department Report to Congress on U.S. Government Contributions to International Organizations
The U.S. State Department has filed its 2017 Report to Congress on U.S. Contributions to International Organizations.
The United Nations Participation Act requires the U.S. Secretary of State to submit an annual report to Congress on the extent and disposition of all financial contributions made by the United States during the preceding year to international organizations in which the United States participates as a member.
This report describes U.S. Government contributions and other support to international organizations for fiscal year 2017. The report includes funding in support of certain multilateral entities that are not generally considered international organizations.