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Caught in a Geopolitical Crossfire: Questioning the Legality of US-Imposed Export Controls on Dutch Computer Chip Machines

For years now, the US has lobbied with the Dutch government to institute controls on the export to China of chipmaking machines produced by ASML, Europe’s most valuable tech company. In 2019, Washington effectively pushed the Netherlands to prevent the export of one of ASML’s most advanced “Extreme Ultraviolet” (EUV) lithography machines to China. And in January 2023, the US succeeded in forging a deal with Japan and the Netherlands to institute further export controls on semiconductor manufacturing equipment. Yet for the Biden administration, the Dutch controls did not go far enough. Therefore, on 17 October 2023, the US extended the reach of its domestic export controls legislation to prevent ASML from exporting technology to China not covered under Dutch controls. The unilateral measures – part of a wider regulatory tranche to restrict the transfer of critical technologies to the Asian industrial powerhouse – led to a scramble for ASML products by Chinese companies, as Anh Nguyen describes in…

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The Death of Nuclear Arms Control Treaties

A generational crisis in international nuclear arms control law was already looming when, on February 21, 2023, Vladimir Putin announced that Russia would suspend its participation in the 2010 New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (New START).  New START, a bilateral nuclear arms control treaty between Russia and the U.S., was already scheduled to terminate by its terms…

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On the ‘Suspension’ of the New START Treaty by Russia

On 21 February 2023, the President of Russia, Vladimir Putin, announced to the Federal Assembly that Russia would suspend the Treaty between the United States of America and the Russian Federation on Measures for the Further Reduction and Limitation of Strategic Offensive Arms (the ‘New START Treaty’, signed on 8 April 2010…

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Russia’s Recognition of the ‘Separatist Republics’ in Ukraine was Manifestly Unlawful

The rush to judgment can be deceptive. A recent contribution to these pages cautions us against making instant assumptions of fact and law when considering Russia’s recognition as states of parts of Luhansk and Donetsk Oblasts within Ukraine as manifestly unlawful. Two questions arise: Do the Oblasts meet the criteria of statehood and, if so,…

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An International Law Assessment of the Collective Self-defence Clause of the 2021 Treaty on the ‘Establishment of Strategic Partnership of Cooperation in Matters of Defence and Security’ between Greece and France

On 28 September 2021 France and Greece concluded a bilateral treaty on the ‘Establishment of Strategic Partnership of Cooperation in Matters of Defence and Security’ (see the Greek and French version here. The Treaty has not been translated yet into English). The Treaty is premised on a community of interests in matters of foreign policy, defence, and…

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