International Law and Domestic Law

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COVID-19, the right to education and Bangladesh

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought in a paradigm shift in the understanding of human rights jurisprudence. Like many other human rights, the right to education is now continuously being rethought and renegotiated within the constant pulls of statist economic priorities and public health emergencies. In the context of Bangladesh, these pulls are rather strong. The pandemic has penetrated the thin veneers of ‘economic constraints’ and ‘progressive realisation’ that the country always hid behind. It is the pre-pandemic priorities, manifested through the rights-enforcement and budgetary frameworks, which are now defining the vulnerability of the country in terms of protecting the citizens’ right to education, among other rights, at present. The responses to COVID-19 pandemic in the education sector are failing to be an equaliser and, for the reasons set out below, are not compliant with the country’s international human rights obligations.

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The relationship between domestic and international courts: the need to incorporate judicial politics into the analysis

In the latest issue of EJIL, Raffaela Kunz carefully examines the complex relationship between domestic and international courts in human rights adjudication. Amidst the well-known backlash from governments, she draws attention to the growing resistance of domestic high courts to decisions by their international counterparts as well as the main features of this resistance. Kunz traces how…

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The Duties of a Government International Legal Adviser

Although we may not like to be reminded of it, international lawyers start out as domestic lawyers. When being admitted to practice in a particular jurisdiction, we are taught that lawyers owe duties not only to clients, but also to domestic courts and the interests of justice (‘institutional duties’). These institutional duties are hierarchically superior: faced with a…

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The Dutch Prosecution’s Opening Statement in the MH-17 Trial: What Lies Beyond the Horizon?

On 9 March 2020, the Dutch Prosecution made its opening statement in the much anticipated MH-17 Trial, dealing with the shooting down of Malaysia Airlines flight MH-17 over eastern Ukraine and the deaths of its 298 passengers. In doing so, the Prosecutor Ward Ferdinandusse shed light on some of the legal questions that arose…

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Territory as a Victim of Colombia’s War

In two recent resolutions, Colombia’s peace jurisdiction (Jurisdicción Especial para la Paz, SJP) resolved that the Katsa Su and the Cxhab Wala Kile, the territories of the indigenous Awá and Nasa peoples respectively, are victims of Colombia’s 50-year civil war. The two territories thus have the same rights that accrue to all accredited victims under the…

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