International law blog

Cases and News

After the battle in Gaza

After the battle in Gaza, TV news and news agencies websites were filled with interviews and reviews on possibility of bringing a case against Israel for its militants war crimes, for instance through ICC mechanism. Recently, Julian Ku made a post on Opinio Juris website under the name Asymmetric Legal Enforcement in Gaza; in that writing, Ku correctly cleared out that there would be no chance to prosecute any possible crimes under the current legal order of the ICC, and that such possible violations have to be charged through the domestic judicial systems of the conflicting parties; since Hamas does not welcome any accusation against its members for their probable war crimes, and since Israel is a government with transparent judicial system, because of this asymmetric bureaucratic difference «it is almost certainly true that Israelis actually face the possibility of legal punishment, whereas it seems fairly clear that no Palestinan does».

Letting aside the truthfulness of such a plea, I would like to use this opportunity to develop my perspective from a different angel to the problem of Gaza that stays still.

Whilst international law does not allow seizure of territory by use of (military) force, and it is one of the reasons that international law has its current stability, yet Israel has shown its reckless disrespect for this rule, and threat and use of military force has become a pivotal instrument to serve ends of that state’s foreign policy. In writer’s view, if there is any sort of asymmetric legal enforcement in Gaza, in the first place, it is due to continuance of occupation of Palestinian territory and keeping a vast amount of population under the siege in Gaza by Israel.

Of course writer of these lines does not intend to defend brutal and inhuman policy of attacking civilians by any of the parties to the conflict; Israel clearly uses Israeli population to stabilize its control over the occupied region (which is vividly against jus post bellum and the responsibility of occupying power), and it has been claimed that Hamas uses human shield; regarding the situation with Israel, words fallen short to describe Israel government’s disrespect of international rules, but as this written piece is concerned about the other party, if being a National Liberation Movement has any meaning at all, it has to be bloomed in the peaceful manner of the movement and its methods of endeavor.

Here I have a question to put forth for all the readers, (probably including some of the professors that I know): International law, for recognition of internal insurgency used to deem the respect for laws on the battle-field as a necessary element;

Is this sine qua non for an armed group to respect Humanitarian law and Jus in Bellum to be recognized as a National Liberation Movement?(of course no matter the answer to this question is, that would have no effect on Israel obligations for congruence with IHL)

If any international consensus exists on the mere problem of formation of a Palestinian state, it has to come true in the first step, to dry out roots of violence in the future and then to prosecute offenders of the both sides; as far as I can remember the UN Security Council is the responsible and principal organ for such a mandate. Establishment of and independent, international commission of inquiry has been deemed essential in this respect by Human Rights Watch.

Irony is: what Israel has been a barrier for, that is, formation of the State of Palestine, now has become a barrier for countering Palestinians engaged in targeting Israeli civilians through international organizations; the Human Rights Council therefore has omitted Palestinian side from the inquiry.


فوریه 23, 2009 Posted by | حقوق مخاصمات مسلحانه, حقوق بین الملل کیفری, حقوق بشر دوستانه | بیان دیدگاه

intstudy Workshop: Reform in the UN, Experiences and Outlooks

A work shop in going to be held in Center for International Graduate Studies of University of Tehran in 23 February at 4 pm with participation of International University of Imam Khomeini.

فوریه 18, 2009 Posted by | دانشگاهی, سازمان ملل متحد | بیان دیدگاه

الحاق ایران به کنوانسیون مقابله با اعمال غیر قانونی علیه دریانوردی (SUA)

در شماره 18609 روزنامه رسمی مورخه 1387/10/28  ، قانون الحاق جمهوری اسلامی ایران به کنوانسیون مقابله با اعمال غیرقانونی علیه دریانوردی و پروتکل پیوست آن در خصوص مقابله با اعمال غیر قانونی علیه ایمنی سکوهای ثابت واقع در فلات قاره به چاپ رسیده است. این قانون که به صورت لایحه به مجلس شورای اسلامی تقدیم شده بوده در جلسه علنی روز چهارشنبه مورخ 87/9/13 به تصویب و پس از آن به تأیید شورای نگهبان رسیده است.

سابقه ابتکار این کنوانسیون به اوایل دهه 80 باز می گردد. جایی که موج فعالیتهای تروریستی دریاها را فرا گرفته بود و امنیت کشتیها و سلامت مسافرانشان را تهدید می کرد. اوج این جریان، سال 1385 و زمانی بود که کشتی Achille Lauro ربوده شد. در پی این حادثه  مجمع عمومی سازمان ملل طی قطعنامه 40/61 ضمن دعوت کشورها به همکاری از ایمو خواست که حوادث تروریستی بر روی عرشه یا علیه کشتیها را در دستور کار خود قرار دهد. نیز به دنبال ربایش Achille Lauro بود که در نوامبر 1386 کشورهای ایتالیا، اتریش و مصر پیشنهاد تصویب کنوانسیونی را توسط ایمو در رابطه با اعمال غیر قانونی علیه امنیت دریانوردی مطرح کردند. این کنوانسیون سرانجام در 10 مارس 1988 در رم به تصویب رسید و در نوع خود دارای نوآوریهایی به ویژه در مورد صلاحیت کیفری کشورها می باشد که در مواد 4، 6، 10 و 12 نمود بیشتری یافته است.

سند مذکور در حالی پس از 21 سال از انعقاد، توسط جمهوری اسلامی ایران به تصویب می رسد که در اجلاس بازنگری 10 تا 14 اکتبر 2005، پروتکل اصلاحی آن در لندن مورد پذیرش قرار گرفته است. هدف از این اصلاحیه  افزایش توانایی مقابله با خطرات روزافزون تروریست بین المللی و نیز پاسخگویی به قطعنامه 1540 شورای امنیت در ارتباط با سلاحهای تخریب انبوه بود.

گرچه با توجه به سرعت عمل کشورمان در پیوستن به اسناد بین المللی مشخص نیست که ایران در چه زمانی پروتکل جدید را تصویب خواهد نمود و مهمتر از آن آیا پیوستن به آن با گستره متفاوت منافع ملی ما! سازگار خواهد بود یا خیر، بنده مطالعه دقیق این سند بویژه مواد 3 در مورد افزایش محدوده عنصر مادی جرم و ماده 8 در مورد ورود به عرشه کشتی کشورهای عضو را به دوستان علاقه مند به حقوق دریاها توصیه می کنم. اطلاعات بیشتر روی سایت IMO در اختیار شما عزیزان قرار دارد. در آینده نه چندان دور ( البته امیدوارم!) در مورد ماده 8 این پروتکل اصلاحی و تحولاتی که پیرامون قاعده صلاحیت انحصاری دولت صاحب پرچم در حال رخ دادن است تبادل نظر بیشتری خواهیم داشت.

فوریه 16, 2009 Posted by | تروریزم, حقوق بین الملل کیفری, حقوق دریاها | 2 دیدگاه

Combatants and the Combat Zone

در ارتباط با موضوعات targeted killing و دفاع مشروع در قبال گروه های مسلح نامتعارف، خواندن مقاله ی فوق مفبد به نظر می رسد؛ بحث میدان جنگ و عدم مشروعیت هدف قرار دادن رزمنده خارج از آن، و نیز موضوع جنگ های نامتقارن مباحث مرتبط به شمار می رند.

دوستانی که نوشته های Mary Ellen O’Connell را دنبال کرده اند و با دیدگاه اصولی و معتدل او آشنا هستند احتمالا از خواندن این نوشته نیز لذت خواهند برد. (حقیر خود هنوز فرصت نکرده ام).

فوریه 11, 2009 Posted by | کتاب ها و مقالات روز, حقوق مخاصمات مسلحانه, حقوق بشر دوستانه, دانشگاهی | بیان دیدگاه

The Maastricht Centre for Human Rights: call for papers

Here’s the call:

Conference theme

Corruption, generally defined as ‘the abuse of public office for private gain’, is one of the greatest social evils of our time. In the words of former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, ‘Corruption hurts the poor disproportionately by diverting funds intended for development, undermining a government’s ability to provide basic services, feeding inequality and injustice, and discouraging foreign investment and aid.’ The adoption of several international anti-corruption treaties such as the United Nations Convention Against Corruption in 2003 put the problem on the international agenda, and it is likely to stay there. Research on corruption is conducted by scholars in several academic areas and the problem is addressed by the major international financial institutions and NGOs. However, from the human rights perspective, corruption has not been studied extensively. This two-day conference aims to bring together researchers in various disciplines to further examine the links between corruption and human rights.

Conference format

This interdisciplinary conference will host several keynote speakers as well as the six workshops described below. In order to offer all participants the opportunity to take part in the entire programme, workshops will be held simultaneously, while each workshop is offered on both the first and the second day of the conference. The workshops have an interactive character since participants will be given the opportunity to download and read the conference papers in advance and are thus encouraged to engage in discussions with the presenters.

Workshop titles

1. Corruption as a Violation of Human Rights?

Even though no human rights treaty refers explicitly to corruption, would it be possible to qualify (certain forms of) corruption as a human rights violation in itself?

2. Causes of Corruption: a Human Rights Perspective

In order to combat corruption, it is imperative to search for the driving forces behind corruption. Do human rights violations also feed corruption?

3. Researching Corruption: Methodological and Cultural Challenges

This workshop is concerned with issues surrounding the research of corruption, such as measuring the amount of corruption, cultural issues, as well as identifying the relationship between corruption and the non-fulfillment of human rights.

4. Corporations, Corruption and Human Rights

Corruption is not merely a practice for which state actors are to blame. Corporate conduct plays a large part as well. This workshop therefore addresses the supply-side of corruption and the functioning of the legal norms governing corporate behaviour.

5. Towards a Fundamental Human Right to a Corruption-Free Public Service?

Is corruption serious enough to formulate a new, independent human right to a public service free of corruption? This workshop aims to discuss arguments pro and con the establishment of such a right.

6. Safeguarding Human Rights while Fighting Corruption

Corruption is generally a secretive practice, which makes investigation and prosecution of corruption cases a difficult matter. However, in the fight against corruption, the human rights of persons suspected of corruption should be respected as well.

Call for papers

The Centre for Human Rights of Maastricht University invites academic researchers in various disciplines to submit papers for presentation at the conference. Papers should relate to the topic of one of the six workshops mentioned above. Please note that, given the format of the conference, presenters must be available on both days, in order to participate in two sessions of the same workshop. Proposals for papers (abstracts of max. 500 words) should be submitted before 15 April 2009. First versions of accepted papers (max. 10,000 words) must be submitted by 1 October 2009, since they will be made available online (only to registered conference participants). Before 15 May 2009, the organisers of the conference will decide which papers will be accepted. Accepted papers will be published after the conference in the Maastricht Series in Human Rights by Intersentia Publishers (Antwerp). Travel expenses and costs for accommodation of authors of accepted papers will be paid for by the organisers.

Abstracts should be sent by e-mail to:

فوریه 11, 2009 Posted by | Call for Papers, حقوق بشر, دانشگاهی | بیان دیدگاه

A new definition of terrorism

In my pre-previous post I wrote about Iran’s ratification of Convention of the Organization of the Islamic Conference on Combating International Terrorism.

That’s granted that there is no consensus among States on the exact definition of Terrorism, however such conventions and the anti terrorism treaty collection under UN, have exemplified the concept in their own specific ways, and it is while domestic laws of states have shed some light on the issue as well.

This Convention too, contains a definition of Terrorism that reads “Terrorism means any act of violence or threat thereof notwithstanding its motives or intentions perpetrated to carry out an individual or collective criminal plan with the aim of terrorizing people or threatening to harm them or imperiling their lives, honor, freedoms, security or rights or exposing the environment or any facility or public or private property to hazards or occupying or seizing them, or endangering a national resource, or international facilities, or threatening the stability, territorial integrity, political unity or sovereignty of independent States.”

to me, since terrorism is a crime, it has to be defined in stricto sensu, the fact that`s missing from the above-said definition; letting aside the looseness, article 1(4), that goes “Crimes stipulated in the following conventions are also considered terrorist crimes with the exception of those excluded by the legislations of Contracting States or those who have not ratified them”(referring to UN conventions on terrorism), can put international cooperation into jeopardy; because it has made it harder to link Islamic Conference attempts to the mainstream of the UN members› endeavor against international terrorism, by putting domestic provisions of contracting parties in superiority to those provisions that UN conventions imply.

this may be explainable considering the facts:

1)      the continuance of occupation of the Palestinian territory by Israel,

2)      presence of foreign troops in the region (Iraq and Afghanistan) which in case of Iraq, in the first place was utterly against old costumed Jus ad bellum, and was sort of justified ex post facto by the Security Council;

Letting aside the positive and negative effects of such a loose definition from Islamic Conference on  terrorism, first and foremost, it seems to be a response to the loose policy making of the great powers in the Security Council and the United Nations System to combat the so called terrorism in the first place.

For those mates who eager to read on the mere question of definition of Terrorism, I inter alia, suggest:

The Definition of Terrorism A Report by Lord Carlile of Berriew Q.C. Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation;

Definition of Terrorism and Self-Determination by Jorri Duursma;

Towards a Definition of Terrorism by Ayatullah Shaykh Muhammad ‹Ali Taskhiri

فوریه 11, 2009 Posted by | معاهدات بین المللی, تروریزم, سازمان های منطقه ای, طرح پرسش | بیان دیدگاه

ILC Commentaries

جوانترها برای اینکه اشتباه ما را تکرار نکنند و وقت و پول خود را برای کپی کردن کتاب مستطاب کامنتری کمیسیون حقوق بین الملل در مورد مسئولیت دولت ها که با مقدمه ی پروفسور کرافورد چاپ شده هدر ندهند، می توانند به اینجا رجوع کنند و آن متن و البته برخی دیگر از شرحیات کمیسیون را ملاحظه نمایند.

فوریه 9, 2009 Posted by | دانشگاهی | ۱ دیدگاه

الحاق دولت جمهوری اسلامی ایران به کنوانسیون سازمان کنفرانس اسلامی جهت مبارزه با تروریسم بین المللی

قانون الحاق ایران به کنوانسیون سازمان کنفرانس اسلامی جهت مبارزه با تروریسم بین المللی در روزنامه ی رسمی شماره ی 18625 مورخ 16 بهمن 1378 به طبع رسید. این کنوانسیون که با اعلامیه ی تفسیری جمهوری اسلامی ایران همراهی می شود شامل بر 4 بخش و 42 ماده است.

اعلامیه ی تفسیری ایران در بخش اخیر بیان می دارد: «طبیعی است موضوعات زیر می تواند از جمله ی موضوعات موافقتنامه های دو یا چند جانبه (ی فوق الذکر) قرار گیرد: 1- تعریف واحد از «جرایم تروریستی» و «جرایم سیاسی»…»

ماده ی 2 کنوانسیون مقرر داشته «در اجرای مفاد این کنوانسیون، جرایم زیر حتی با انگیزه های سیاسی، جرایم سیاسی محسوب نخواهد شد: 1. تعرض به پادشاهان…». واژه ی تعرض در این ترجمه معادل با واژه ی Aggression قرار گرفته. شاید ترجمه ی روشن تر می توانست سوء قصد باشد.

فوریه 9, 2009 Posted by | معاهدات بین المللی, تروریزم, سازمان های منطقه ای | بیان دیدگاه