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The Mariupol Test: Analysing the Briefs of Third States Intervening in Ukraine and the Netherlands v. Russia

The interstate case of Ukraine and the Netherlands v. Russia is currently pending on its merits before the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights. It is one of the most complex and politically momentous cases ever to be heard by the Court. Russia is no longer participating in the proceedings, and will not comply with any judgment rendered by the Court. This means that the immediate practical consequences of the judgment itself will be relatively limited, although I’m sure Ukraine will try to use it in various creative ways (for example, to justify the seizure of frozen Russian assets for any reparation that Ukraine is due, and the transfer of such assets by third states to Ukraine). The judgment will also have a symbolic, expressive impact. It may also bring some measure of satisfaction to the victims of the human rights violations at issue. But, perhaps most importantly, the judgment will provide the most authoritative statement by the Court on how the European Convention should apply extraterritorially and in armed conflict in future…

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Life & Death, an Unstable Scale: The European Court of Human Rights Approach to Euthanasia in Mortier v. Belgium

On 4 October 2022, the European Court of Human Rights (“ECtHR”) issued a Chamber judgment in the case of Mortier v. Belgium. This landmark ruling is the first-ever ruling of the ECtHR on the compliance of euthanasia, once performed, with the rights protected under the European Convention of Human Rights (“ECHR”). Additionally,…

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Targeted Killings: New Allegations Against India and Ukraine

Yesterday, the Canadian prime minister, Justin Trudeau, stood up in Parliament and formally accused the government of India of committing a targeted killing on Canadian territory. The victim, Hardeep Singh Nijjar, was a prominent leader of a Sikh separatist movement in India, who was designated as a terrorist by the Indian government. He was assassinated…

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Amicus Curiae Brief in Ukraine and the Netherlands v. Russia

The European Court of Human Rights recently joined two major interstate cases pending before it – the interstate case filed by Ukraine and the Netherlands against Russia that concerned the downing of the MH17 airliner and events in Eastern Ukraine in 2014, which it declared admissible in January, with the new interstate application filed by Ukraine…

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The Crotone Migrant Shipwreck: A Cat-and-Mouse Blame Game and the Role of Technologies at External Borders

There are myriad ways States could exercise effective remote control over the rights of persons, including detrimental rescue instructions, as well as policy and operational arrangements that can hinder human rights protection. On 26 February 2023, a migrant shipwreck off the Italian coast of Crotone, yet again ‘shocked’ the European Union (EU). Indeed, it has been quite a…

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