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Of Straw Men, the United Nations and Illegal Occupation: A Rejoinder to David Hughes

Introduction In volume 31:3 of EJIL, David Hughes provides an interesting reply to my article in the same volume, in which I critically examine the commitment of the United Nations (UN) to the international rule of law by examining its management of the occupied Palestinian territory (OPT) since 1967. I argue that by merely documenting the host of Israeli violations of international humanitarian law (IHL) and international human rights law (IHRL) over Israel’s 53-year ‘temporary’ occupation of the OPT without definitively addressing the legality of the regime giving rise to those violations themselves, the UN has failed to discharge its functions in accordance with international law. I posit that based on the UN record itself the occupation is illegal for its systematic violation of three jus cogens norms – the prohibition on the acquisition of territory through the threat or use of force, the obligation to respect self-determination of peoples, and the obligation to refrain from imposing alien regimes inimical to humankind, including of racial discrimination. It is therefore curious,…

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Betwixt and Between: What We Write About When We Write About International Law History

Introduction  Upon reading Janne Nijman’s elegant response to my recent article in the European Journal of International Law (A New League of Extraordinary Gentlemen? The Professionalization of International Law Scholarship in The Netherlands, 1919-1940), what immediately sprung to mind was a legendary quote from Arnold Toynbee: “The only real struggle in the history of the…

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In this Issue

The Articles section of this issue opens with an empirical study by Laurence Helfer and Erik Voeten, which identifies – through an analysis of minority opinions – an increase in European Court of Human Rights judgments that implicitly overturn prior progressive judgments. The authors suggest that these judgments represent a response to the populist backlash against human rights.

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New Issue of EJIL (Vol. 31 (2020) No. 3) Now Published

The latest issue of the European Journal of International Law  (Vol. 31 (2020) No. 3) is now out. A number of the editorial posts by Joseph Weiler, one of the Editors-in-Chief of EJIL, have already been published (see here and here), and the other editorial will be shared this week. These posts appear…

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Happy New Year and Our Most Read Posts of 2020

Happy New Year to all our readers! As a supplement to Gail Lythgoe’s wonderful review of the year on EJIL:Talk! I am posting our traditional list of most read posts of 2020. This is a list of what inspired most interest among you the readers. As is to be expected, the topic that dominated the attention of…

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