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What can the UN General Assembly do about Russian Aggression in Ukraine?

Yesterday Devika Hovell wrote an excellent post on this forum, rightly noting that the Security Council was not the body to deal with Russian aggression in Ukraine. Hovell pointed to the General Assembly as the most appropriate alternative, and suggested that the Security Council should pass a ‘Uniting for Peace’ (U4P) resolution, referring the matter of Ukraine to the Assembly. This post picks up from where Hovell’s left off. It examines, firstly, whether there is any need for the Security Council to refer the matter of Ukraine to the General Assembly pursuant to the U4P Resolution; and secondly – briefly – what the Assembly could practically do. The Uniting for Peace Resolution The U4P Resolution was passed by the General Assembly in 1950, in order to circumvent the Soviet veto in relation to the Korean war. It states that: If the Security Council, because of lack of unanimity of the permanent members, fails to exercise its primary responsibility for the maintenance of…

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Council at War: Russia, Ukraine and the UN Security Council

‘It is the responsibility of this body to stop the war’, Ukraine’s representative told the UN Security Council on Wednesday this week. He was interrupted by the current President of the UN Security Council who clarified ‘this isn’t called a war, this is called a special military operation in the Donbas’. In this moment, the Ukrainean representative…

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Is the ICJ at Risk of Providing Cover for the Alleged Genocide in Myanmar?

The first anniversary of the coup mounted by the Myanmar military was marked by a surprising step. On 1 February 2022, the National Unity Government of the Union of Myanmar (NUG) made a declaration to the International Court of Justice. The government, which mainly consists of those elected representatives not yet captured by the military regime, was created…

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The Legality of Use of Ballistic Missiles on Cities: The Case of Armenia-Azerbaijan Armed Conflict

The so-called ‘44-Day War’ between Armenia and Azerbaijan in late 2020 also witnessed Armenia’s use of Scud ballistic missiles on several of Azerbaijan’s cities. After Iraq’s use of Scuds on Saudi, Bahrain, and Israeli cities during the Gulf War 1990-1991, it is the second time in modern history when ballistic missiles were used against population…

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Collective Security Treaty Organization: Why are Russian Troops in Kazakhstan?

Background One matchstick is enough to burn the house down, especially when gas is involved. Shortly after New Year’s Eve, protests began in Kazakhstan, the biggest and economically strongest state in the Central Asian region, over rising gas prices. The protests have transformed from mere price reduction demands into anti-government riots. A decade ago,…

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