Georgia Law Professor Amann in roundtable on international criminal justice at GW Law journal conference

Diane Marie Amann, the Emily & Ernest Woodruff Chair in International Law and Dean Rusk International Law Center Faculty Co-Director here at the University of Georgia School of Law, recently took part in an online panel entitled “International Courts and Their Role in Cross-Border Criminal Prosecutions.”

The panel was one of several at the 2021 symposium of the George Washington University International Law Review, which considered international law and policy challenges created by global technological and physical shifts.

Joining Amann, who is also the Special Adviser to the International Criminal Court Prosecutor on Children in & affected by Armed Conflict, in the roundtable discussion were: Olympia Bekou, Professor of Public International Law and Head of the University of Nottingham School of Law; and Patricia Viseur Sellers, Special Advisor for Gender for the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Visiting Fellow, Kellogg College, University of Oxford, and Practicing Professor, London School of Economics. Moderator was Michael J. Matheson, Adjunct Professor at GW Law.

Georgia Law Professor Harlan Cohen presents “Nations and Markets” to University of Trento, Italy

Harlan Cohen, who is Gabriel M. Wilner/UGA Foundation Professor in International Law and Faculty Co-Director of the Dean Rusk International Law Center here at the University of Georgia School of Law, recently gave an online presentation of his new article “Nations and Markets” at Italy’s University of Trento School of International Studies.

Available at SSRN, “Nations and Markets” was published in December in the peer-reviewed Journal of International Economic Law.

Its description:

“Economics and security seem increasingly intertwined. Citing national security, states subject foreign investments to new scrutiny, even unwinding mergers. The provision of 5G has become a diplomatic battleground—Huawei at its center. Meanwhile, states invoke national security to excuse trade wars. The USA invoked the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade national security exception to impose steel and aluminum tariffs, threatening more on automotive parts. Russia invoked that provision to justify its blockade of Ukraine, as did Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to excuse theirs of Qatar. And with the spread of COVID-19, states are invoking national security to scrutinize supply lines. Multiplying daily, such stories have led some observers to dub the era one of geoeconomics.

“Nonetheless, these developments remain difficult to judge, and the relationship between economics and national security remains confused and slippery. The essay seeks clarity in the deeper logic of these labels, revealing a fundamental choice between the logics of markets and the logics of state. Whether invoked to ‘secure’ borders, privacy, health, the environment, or jobs, ‘national security’ is a claim about the proper location of policymaking. Appeals to economics, with their emphasis on global welfare and global person-to-person relationships, are such claims as well. Resolving disputes, this essay argues, requires recognizing these root choices.”

Georgia Law honored again to be honored for excellence in international law

Delighted to share the news that the just-released US News rankings place our international law curriculum here at the University of Georgia School of Law at No. 18 in the United States.

This marks the 7th time in recent years we’ve been among the top 20 or so US law schools for international law.

The achievement is due in no small part to the enthusiastic support and hard work of everyone affiliated with Georgia Law’s 40-plus-year-old Dean Rusk International Law Center. As chronicled at this Exchange of Notes blog and our Center website, these include:

► Superb members of the law faculty, including: Dean Peter B. “Bo” Rutledge, an international arbitration expert; our Center’s Interim Director, Lori A. Ringhand, a scholar of comparative constitutional law and elections law; the Center’s Faculty Co-Directors, Professors Diane Marie Amann, an expert in security governance fields including the laws of war and international criminal justice, and Harlan G. Cohen, an expert in global governance and foreign relations law; Professors Melissa J. “MJ” Durkee, whose expertise includes international business law and international environmental law, Christopher M. Bruner, a comparative corporate governance scholar, Thomas E. Kadri, whose expertise includes cybercrime and global data privacy, Jason A. Cade, an immigration expert, Jonathan Peters, a journalism and law professor expert in international media and free speech, Anne Burnett, foreign and international law librarian, Elizabeth Weeks and Fazal Khan, health law specialists, Kent Barnett, Sonja West, and Elizabeth Chamblee Burch, who have presented overseas on administrative law, media law, and civil procedure, respectively, Walter Hellerstein, a world-renowned tax specialist, Nathan S. Chapman, a scholar of due process and extraterritoriality, Michael L. Wells, a European Union scholar, and Andrea Dennis, whose book “Rap on Trial” has garnered international media attention.

► Talented students pursuing JD, MSL, and LLM degrees, including: the staffers and editors of the Georgia Journal of International and Comparative Law who produce one of the country’s oldest student journals, and who led our January 2021 conference, “The Future of Global Healthcare Governance”; the advocates on our Willem C. Vis International Commercial Arbitration Moot and Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court teams; students in our Appellate Litigation Clinic who argue asylum cases before U.S. Courts of Appeals; participants in our full-semester NATO Externship and in our Global Externships; and the student leaders of our International Law Society.

► Superb Center staff like Laura Tate Kagel, Sarah Quinn, Mandy Dixon, and Catrina Martin.

► Academics, practitioners, and policymakers, from all over the world, who have contributed to our events – conferences, workshops, and lectures, as well as our International Law Colloquium and Consular Series.

Graduates who excel as partners in international commercial law firms, as heads of nongovernmental organizations and international organizations, as in-house counsel at leading multinational enterprises, and as diplomats and public servants – and who give back through mentoring and other support.

► Our valued partnerships, with Georgia Law student organizations; with organizations like the American Branch of the International Law Association, with which we are hosting International Law Weekend South next month, and the American Society of International Law, in which our faculty hold leadership roles, as well as Global Atlanta, the World Affairs Council of Atlanta, the Atlanta International Arbitration Society; and with university units like the School of Public & International Affairs, the Terry College of Business, the Grady School of Journalism, the African Studies Institute, and the Willson Center for Humanities & Arts.

With thanks to all, we look forward to continue strengthening our initiatives in international, comparative, transnational, and foreign relations law – not least, in the preparation of Georgia Law students to practice in our 21st C. globalized legal profession.

Georgia Law Appellate Litigation Clinic students ask for asylum and withholding of removal in 11th Circuit oral argument

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit heard arguments this week in an asylum and immigration case prepared by a team of students in the University of Georgia School of Law Appellate Litigation Clinic.

Georgia Law 3L Maddie Conkel argued on behalf of the petitioner in Case No. 19-15144, Denis Aguilera Fernandez v. Garland. On account of the Covid-19 pandemic, Conkel’s argument was delivered online to a panel composed of Eleventh Circuit Judges William H. Pryor Jr., Jill A. Pryor, and Ed Carnes (audio here).

In earlier proceedings both the Immigration Judge and the Board of Immigration Appeals agreed that the Clinic’s client – whom Cuban police had detained and beaten repeatedly over two years in an effort to prevent him from protesting the Cuban government – was “thoroughly credible.”  They further agreed that his mistreatment, though “severe and regrettable,” did not rise to the level of “persecution,” and that he had no reasonable fear of future persecution.

Conkel’s argument sought reversal of the resulting denials of asylum and withholding of removal. Georgia Law 3L Sarah Nelson helped Conkel prepare for the argument, and several other students helped the Clinic brief the case. 

The Eleventh Circuit panel is now deliberating.

Georgia Law center, ABILA to cohost International Law Weekend South April 7

Delighted to announce that the Dean Rusk International Law Center at the University of Georgia School of Law will cohost International Law Weekend South with American Branch of the International Law Association.

Entitled “Democracy and Governance in the Internet Era,” the daylong online conference will take place on Wednesday, April 7. Registration here.

Following a welcome by Georgia Law Dean Peter B. “Bo” Rutledge and an introduction by ABILA President Leila Sadat, the conference will consist of these four 75-minute sessions, featuring an international array of scholars:

Civil society’s role in informing, protecting the right of peaceful assembly

In July 2020, the U.N. Human Rights Committee adopted General Comment No. 37 on Article 21 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights. Article 21 guarantees the right of peaceful assembly, and the GC provides an authoritative interpretation of that right as well as guidance to ensure its practical enjoyment, online and offline. The GC addresses a wide variety of assembly issues at a particularly critical time. In an effort to raise awareness of what the GC does, how it came to be, and its significance in the United States and beyond, this panel will feature experts from civil society organizations who helped inform the GC’s drafting and who are now helping to see it implemented.

Moderator:  Jonathan Peters, University of Georgia
• Francesca Fanucci, European Center for Not-for-Profit Law
• Paulina Gutierrez, Legal Officer, Article 19
• Michael Hamilton, University of East Anglia
• Daniel Simons, Greenpeace

Political Campaigns: Perspectives from Abroad

Existing rules governing political party spending and campaign finance are increasingly seen as not up to the task of effectively and transparently regulating political communications around elections. Social media algorithms that amplify outrage, rampant disinformation campaigns, and foreign interference in domestic elections all complicate what was already the challenging task of devising effective and fair regulation in this realm. This panel brings together election law scholars from around the world to discuss how their legal regimes are tackling these new and challenging problems.

Moderator: Lori A. Ringhand, University of Georgia
• Irene Couzigou, University of Aberdeen
• Yasmin Dawood, University of Toronto
• Jacob Eisler, University of Southampton
• Galen Irwin, Leiden University
• Graeme Orr, University of Queensland, Australia
• Ciara C. Torres-Spelliscy, Stetson University

Reforming the National Security State

For many, the past four years highlighted growing concerns over the U.S. national security state. For some, the concerns focused on national security priorities, including the last administration’s focus on immigration and trade. For others, the concerns focused on increased presidential unilateralism and broad readings of executive powers over treaty withdrawal and the use of force. For still others, the concerns focused on national security tools and how they have been used, from immigration enforcement to criminal investigations to individual sanctions.
With a new administration and a new Congress, many see this is a unique opportunity to reform the national security state. This roundtable will consider how the current administration might rethink priorities and tools and how Congress might approach its role in facilitating and limiting presidential discretion.

Participants:
• Diane Marie Amann, University of Georgia
• Elena Chachko, Harvard University
• Harlan G. Cohen, University of Georgia
• Maryam Jamshidi, University of Florida

Social Media and the Language of Statehood

Scholars, journalists, and companies increasingly frame social media’s decisionmaking using the language of democratic governance and human rights. From talk of “corporate constitutionalism” to Facebook’s “Supreme Court,” the lines between private and public “governance” are murkier than ever.
This panel will assess these rhetorical moves. Are they helpful in understanding how the companies operate and how their power might be constrained? Or do they provide corporate actions with false legitimacy that undermines or overpowers calls for public regulation?

Moderator: Thomas E. Kadri, University of Georgia
• Evelyn M. Aswad, Oklahoma College of Law
• Elettra Bietti, Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Security, Harvard
• Brenda Dvoskin, Harvard University
• David Kaye, University of California, Irvine
• Genevieve Lakier, University of Chicago

2L Emina Sadic Herzberger, President of the Georgia Law International Law Society, will close the conference.

Georgia Law Prof Diane Marie Amann elected to Council on Foreign Relations

Our Dean Rusk International Law Center Faculty Co-Director, Georgia Law Professor Diane Marie Amann, has just been elected to the Council on Foreign Relations. The council is an independent, nonpartisan organization and thinktank that is composed of the most prominent foreign policy leaders, including top government officials, renowned scholars, business executives, acclaimed journalists, prominent lawyers and distinguished nonprofit professionals.

Amann holds Georgia Law’s Emily and Ernest Woodruff Chair in International Law at the University of Georgia School of Law, and also a courtesy appointment in the Department of International Affairs at the university’s School of Public & International Affairs.

Since 2012, she has served as the Special Adviser to the International Criminal Court Prosecutor on Children in and affected by Armed Conflict. Her current research concerns issues of child security and also histories of international law. Under contract with the Oxford University Press, she is writing what will be the first-ever book on the roles of women professionals at the 1945-46 trial before the International Military Tribunal at Nuremberg.

In addition to CFR, her professional affiliations include service as a Counsellor and past Vice President of the American Society of International Law, and also member of the founding coordinating committee member for the Interest Group on International Criminal Justice of the European Society of International Law.

Judge Joan Donoghue, Sibley Lecturer at Georgia Law, elected President of International Court of Justice

The Honorable Joan E. Donoghue, the American judge on the International Court of Justice, today was elected President of the International Court of Justice, the Hague-based institution known colloquially as the World Court.

She is the 3d American to serve a term as President, following Green H. Hackworth (1955-58) and Stephen M. Schwebel (1997-2000), and also the 2d woman, following Dame Rosalyn Higgins of the United Kingdom (2006-09).

We at the University of Georgia School of Law Dean Rusk International Law Center are pleased to welcome this news, not least because of Judge Donoghue’s generosity over the years toward our law school community:

  • In April 2012, a little more than a year before her initial election to the ICJ, Donoghue visited Georgia Law’s Athens campus to deliver our 108th Sibley Lecture. Her talk, entitled “The Role of the World Court Today,” (video) outlined the court’s history as the judicial organ of the United Nations, as well as the nature and evolution of its jurisdiction over disputes between nation-states and certain advisory matters. The text was published at 47 Georgia Law Review 181 (2012).
  • On occasions thereafter, as part of our Global Governance Summer School, the judge and her staff kindly hosted our students as they received a tour of the court’s seat, the Peace Palace, as well as a briefing on the court’s work.

As explained at the ICJ website:

“The President presides at all meetings of the Court; he/she directs its work and supervises its administration, with the assistance of a Budgetary and Administrative Committee and various other committees, all composed of Members of the Court. During judicial deliberations, the President has a casting vote in the event of votes being equally tied.”

Before joining the ICJ, Donoghue was Principal Deputy Legal Adviser in the U.S. Department of State, a position in which her duties included advising the Secretary of State and other officials on all aspects of international law. She’d practiced at State since 1984, with a few breaks to serve as Deputy General Counsel for the U.S. Department of the Treasury and General Counsel for Freddie Mac. She holds bachelor’s and law degrees from the Santa Cruz and Berkeley campuses, respectively, of the University of California.

Having been elected President by a vote of her peers on the court, Judge Donoghue will serve a 3-year term – as will her colleague who was elected Vice-President, Judge Kirill Gevorgian of the Russian Federation.

Georgia Law Professor Amann marks Holocaust Remembrance Day with talk on women at Nuremberg trials

Women at the Nuremberg Trials was the title of a lecture delivered last week by Professor Diane Marie Amann, the Emily & Ernest Woodruff Chair in International Law and Faculty Co-Director of the Dean Rusk International Law Center here at the University of Georgia School of Law.

Occurring on International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Wednesday’s talk focused on several of the many women who took part in the Nuremberg proceedings, as lawyers and legal professionals, translators and interpreters, witnesses and journalists – in short, in nearly every post except judge.

Sponsor of the event was the Center on National Security and Human Rights Law at Chicago-Kent College of Law.

Georgia Law Professor Amann takes part in launch of NGO report documenting crimes against children in Syria

Professor Diane Marie Amann, the Emily & Ernest Woodruff Chair in International Law and Faculty Co-Director of the Dean Rusk International Law Center here at the University of Georgia School of Law, took part last Friday in the launch of a report on crimes against and affecting children in Syria.

“Children of Syria – The Lost Hope,” was hosted by the Syrian Network for Human Rights, a nongovernmental organization that monitors, documents, and maintains a database of human rights violations in Syria, the site of a nearly ten-year-old conflict. The organization issued its Ninth Annual Report on Violations against Children in Syria (above left) on World’s Children Day, the day in November that marks the anniversary the adoptions by the UN General Assembly of the 1959 Declaration of the Rights of the Child and the 1989 Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Participants in last week’s event discussed the Ninth Report, which stated that the Syrian conflict had claimed nearly 30,000 children between March 2011 and January 2021 – nearly 200 of them as a result of torture. Additional harms, many of which may constitute war crimes or crimes against humanity, documented include arrest and detention of children, forcible disappearance, attacks on schools and deprivation of education, and recruitment and use by armed forces.

Professor Amann, an expert in international criminal law and child rights, joined a panel discussing these findings, their impact on children and society at large, and avenues for redress and accountability. Amann said that the Ninth Report described conduct

“that constitutes both systematic violations of human rights in many different sectors as well as international crimes as articulated in the statutes of multiple tribunals and recognized as customary international law.”

She further outlined treaties and forums through which such conduct might be addressed.

Also speaking at the event, which is archived and available for viewing here, were: Fadel Abdul Ghany, Chairman of the Syrian Network for Human Rights; Martin Leeser, a member of the Syria team at the German Embassy in Beirut, Lebanon; Dr. Troels Gauslå Engell, Senior Stabilisation Advisor on Syria to the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Paula Sastrowijoto, Deputy Syria Envoy at the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs; Lina Biscaia, Senior Legal Officer, Sexual and Gender-Based Crimes and Crimes against Children Unit of the UN Investigative Team for Accountability of Da’esh/ISIL; Javier Perez Salmeron of the Justice Rapid Response Child Rights Expert Roster; and Valentina Falco, Team Leader-Child Protection, UN Department of Peace Operations.

Georgia Law alumna Chanel Chauvet publishes at Opinio Juris on POW remittances, in blog symposium on 2020 GCIII Commentary directed by alumnus Jean-Marie Henckaerts

Pleased to note the publication last Thursday by a recent graduate of the University of Georgia School of Law, as part of an ongoing joint symposium sponsored by Opinio Juris and by the Humanitarian Law & Policy Blog of the International Committee of the Red Cross.

Author of the contribution entitled “Prisoners of War Remittances – Financial Challenges of Sanctions and Conversion Rates” is Chanel Chauvet, who earned her J.D. degree from Georgia Law in 2018, and also, just last year, her LL.M. degree cum laude in International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights from the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights in Switzerland.

Applying a case study of relations between Iran and the United States, Chauvet’s post details the obstacles faced by a prisoner of war, or POW, in securing remittances – funds that family members send “in an effort to contribute to the POW’s financial welfare” – on account of financial sanctions regimes and currency conversion rates. She concludes with recommendations that would remove remittances from the effects of these regimes, writing:

“The legal landscape governing POW remittances is insufficient, and as such, states should collectively address the obstacles that damage the financial health of POWs by incorporating specific protections for POWs (e.g., a legal exclusion for POW payments and remittances) from the effects of the banking sanctions that are in place in their Power of Origin.”

While a J.D. student, Chauvet served as a Dean Rusk International Law Center Student Ambassador and a research assistant to the Center’s Faculty Co-Directors, Professors Harlan Cohen and Diane Marie Amann. She completed the Grotius Centre Summer School on Humanitarian Law at Leiden Law School in the Netherlands, competed on a winning Model African Union team, served as worldwide student president of the International Law Students Association, and was the recipient of the Blacks of the American Society of International Law Annual Meeting Scholarship.

Chauvet is a member of the Bars of the State of Georgia and of the District of Columbia.

At the Geneva Academy, she was elected the Student Council LL.M. Representative and was the student commencement speaker. She served as a Legal Intern in the International Law & Policy Department at the ICRC, and also made presentations at meetings of the UN Human Rights Council in her capacity as the Permanent Representative in Geneva for the International Association of Jewish Lawyers and Jurists.

Chauvet’s LL.M. thesis, from which the Opinio Juris post draws, was supervised by a Geneva Academy professor who is himself earned his LL.M. at Georgia Law in 1990: Dr. Jean-Marie Henckaerts, Legal Adviser in the ICRC’s Legal Division and a member of our Dean Rusk International Law Center Council.

Chauvet’s post forms part of a symposium of articles analyzing aspects of Convention (III) relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of War. Geneva, 12 August 1949. Commentary of 2020. Known colloquially as GCIII, that commentary is the third published under Dr. Henckaerts’ directorship. Indeed, we at the Center were honored to host a daylong conference marking the issuance of the initial volume, the Commentary on First Geneva Convention, with papers published in the Georgia Journal of International & Comparative Law.