Season’s greetings

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Wishing a festive holiday season to all friends of our Dean Rusk International Law Center, University of Georgia School of Law. We look forward to exchanges and collaborations in the coming New Year!

Accountability for harms to children during armed conflict discussed at Center-sponsored ILW panel

NEW YORK – Ways to redress offenses against children during armed conflict formed the core of the panel that our University of Georgia School of Law Dean Rusk International Law Center sponsored last Friday at International Law Weekend, an annual three-day conference presented by the American Branch of the International Law Association and the International Law Students Association. I was honored to take part.

► Opening our panel was Shaheed Fatima QC (top right), a barrister at Blackstone Chambers in London, who led a panel of researchers for the Inquiry on Protecting Children in Conflict, an initiative chaired by Gordon Brown, former United Kingdom Prime Minister and current UN Special Envoy for Global Education.

As Fatima explained, the Inquiry focused on harms that the UN Security Council has identified as “six grave violations” against children in conflict; specifically, killing and maiming; recruitment or use as soldiers; sexual violence; abduction; attacks against schools or hospitals; and denial of humanitarian access. With regard to each, the Inquiry identified legal frameworks in international criminal law, international humanitarian law, and international human rights law. It proposed a new means for redress: promulgation of a “single instrument” that would permit individual communications, for an expressed set of violations, to the Committee on the Rights of the Child, the treaty body that monitors compliance with the Convention on the Rights of the Child and its three optional protocols. These findings and recommendations have just been published as Protecting Children in Armed Conflict (Hart 2018).

► Next, Mara Redlich Revkin (2d from left), a Ph.D. Candidate in Political Science at Yale University and Lead Researcher on Iraq and Syria for the United Nations University Project on Children and Extreme Violence.

She drew from her fieldwork to provide a thick description of children’s experiences in regions controlled by the Islamic State, an armed group devoted to state-building – “rebel governance,” as Revkin termed it. Because the IS sees children as its future, she said, it makes population growth a priority, and exercises its control over schools and other “sites for the weaponization of children.” Children who manage to free themselves from the group encounter new problems on account of states’ responses, responses that Revkin has found often to be at odds with public opinion. These range from the  harsh punishment of every child once associated with IS, without considering the extent of that association, to the rejection of IS-issued birth certificates, thus rendering a child stateless.

► Then came yours truly, Diane Marie Amann (left), Emily & Ernest Woodruff Chair in International Law here at the University of Georgia School of Law and our Center’s Faculty Co-Director. I served as a member of the Inquiry’s Advisory Board.

Discussing my service as the Special Adviser to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court on Children in and affected by Armed Conflict, I focused on the preparation and contents of the 2016 ICC OTP Policy on Children, available here in Arabic, English, French, Spanish, and Swahili. The Policy pinpoints the crimes against and affecting children that may be punished pursuant to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, and it further delineates a “child-sensitive approach” to OTP work at all stages, including investigation, charging, prosecution, and witness protection.

► Summing up the conversation was Harold Hongju Koh (2d from right), Sterling Professor of International Law at Yale Law School and former Legal Adviser to the U.S. Department of State, who served as a consultant to the Inquiry.

Together, he said, the presentations comprised “5 I’s: Inquiry, Iraq and Syria, the ICC, and” – evoking the theme of the conference – “international law and why it matters.” Koh lauded the Inquiry’s report as “agenda-setting,” and its proposal for a means to civil redress as a “panda’s thumb” response that bears serious consideration. Koh envisaged that in some future administration the United States – the only country in the world not to have ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child – might come to ratify the proposed new  protocol, as it has the optional protocols relating to children in armed conflict and the sale of children.

The panel thus trained attention on the harms children experience amid conflict and called for redoubled efforts to secure accountability and compensation for such harms.

(Cross-posted from Diane Marie Amann)

Scholarly achievements, thriving initiatives featured in newsletter of Dean Rusk International Law Center

For a recap of the year’s global law-and-practice accomplishments here at the University of Georgia School of Law, have a look at the just-published annual newsletter of the Dean Rusk International Law Center. Features include:

► Welcome to new professors, Melissa J. Durkee and Christopher Bruner, as well as scholarly achievements of our many other globally minded faculty and staff, including Diane Marie Amann, Jason Cade, Nathan S. Chapman, Harlan G. Cohen, Kathleen A. Doty, Matthew I. Hall, Walter Hellerstein, Laura Tate Kagel, Jonathan Peters, Lori Ringhand, Peter B. “Bo” Rutledge, Christian Turner, and Carol Watson.

Events past and future, including day-long conferences cosponsored with the Georgia Journal of International & Comparative Law, public lectures and our Consular Series of lunch talks with Atlanta-based diplomats, and cosponsorship of panels at regional and national international law meetings.

► Initiatives aimed at preparing our J.D. and LL.M. students for global legal practice, including our Global Externships and our Global Governance Summer School, plus support for students’ organizations and international advocacy teams.

The full newsletter is here.

 

In international law journal, Library Director Carol A. Watson publishes article on “fake news”

Critical reading is the core topic of the article that Carol A. Watson, Director of the Alexander Campbell King Law Library here at the University of Georgia School of Law, has just published in a Cambridge University Press law journal.

Watson’s article, “Information Literacy in a Fake/False News World: An Overview of the Characteristics of Fake News and its Historical Development,” 46 International Journal of Legal Information 93 (2018), stems from her panel presentation at the 2017 Annual Course of the International Association of Law Libraries.

Here’s an extract:

“Prior to designing strategies and information literacy programs to combat the dissemination and proliferation of fake/false news, it is instructive for legal information professionals to understand the characteristics of fake news and the context of its historical development.”

The full article is available here.

International Law Society hosts gathering of globally minded students

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International Law Society leadership, from left: Hanna Karimipour, President; Sam Hatcher, Treasurer; and Caitlin Felt, Social Chair

The International Law Society, the University of Georgia School of Law chapter of the worldwide International Law Students Association, hosted a mixer at the end of last week to welcome new globally minded students to their community.

3Co-sponsored by the Dean Rusk International Law Center, the mixer took place last Thursday in the law school’s Eversheds Sutherland Courtyard. This much-anticipated event afforded JD, LLM, and MSL students the chance to relax and learn from each other’s interests and experiences.

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Several faculty members, including Professors Diane Marie Amann, Christopher Bruner (near right), Rob McNiff (far right), and Dan Coenen, dropped by to learn about students’ international ambitions and share their own unique advice and experiences. Staff of the Dean Rusk International Law Center was also on hand to discuss the Center’s international initiatives such as Global Externships Overseas, the Global Governance Summer School, and upcoming events.

The event kicked off with a welcome from Hanna Karimipour, International Law Society President. She gave an overview of the chapter and of opportunities afforded to its members. Kathleen A. Doty, Director of the Dean Rusk International Law Center, then provided information about upcoming events and initiatives at the Center.

 

A warm thank you to all who were able to attend.

LL.M. academic year kicks off at Georgia Law

LLMbrochureCLR2017It’s an exciting time for the LL.M. degree at Georgia Law: orientation for new students began today at the Dean Rusk International Law Center, as we welcomed sixteen foreign-educated lawyers from around the world to Georgia Law. They will begin classes alongside J.D. students next week.

Soon to open is the application for the LL.M. class of Fall 2019 — on September 1, 2018 — via LSAC. Generous merit scholarships will be awarded to top candidates who apply by January 15, 2019. Graduates of law schools outside the United States who are interested in studying at Georgia Law are encouraged to contact us for more information.

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Several University of Georgia staff members have also recently returned from the EducationUSA Forum 2018 in Washington D.C., including Dr. Laura Kagel, our Center’s Associate Director for International Professional Education, Robin Catmur, Director of Immigration Services, and Chenelle Goyen, Associate Director of Admissions and International Admissions for undergraduate students. 1The Forum, hosted by EducationUSA, a U.S. Department of State network of over 425 international student advising centers in more than 175 countries, offered an array of panels focused on international recruiting trends and best practices.

Stay tuned for more information about our incoming LL.M. class; it’s shaping up to be a great year!

 

 

Belgium week of our Global Governance Summer School concludes on a (World Cup) celebratory note

LEUVEN – Final sessions of our 2018 Global Governance Summer School‘s Belgium leg came to an end yesterday, even as the country’s national team vaulted into the final four of the World Cup.

Day 5 of the summer school, devoted to Global Security Governance,  began with a lecture by Dr. Nicolas Hachez. He is a Fellow at the Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies, University of Leuven, with which we at the Dean Rusk International Law Center, University of Georgia School of Law, partner to present the Global Governance Summer School. Hachez’ lecture began with an historical account dating to Aristotle, and ended with a survey of contemporary challenges to rule of law and democracy. (Just below, he listens to a response from Georgia Law student Brooke Carrington.) The presentation provided a valuable recap of many issues raised at the high-level RECONNECT conference our students attended earlier in the week.

Next, yours truly, Georgia Law Professor Diane Marie Amann, Emily & Ernest Woodruff Chair in International Law, one of our Center’s Faculty Co-Directors, and a founding Co-Director of the Global Governance Summer School. I introduced the concept of Global Security Governance, which incorporates within its analysis of human, national, and collective security insights from traditional international law subfields like human rights, the laws of war, and development law.

Our Center’s Director, Kathleen A. Doty, offered an overview of legal regimes related to disarmament and weapons control, including the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty and the Chemical Weapons Convention. Then, as pictured at top, she led our summer school students – variously educated at Georgia Law, Leuven, and several other European institutions – in a spirited, simulated, multilateral negotiation for a new treaty to curb an imagined new development in weapons technology.

The week’s classroom component concluded with a lecture on “Global Governance, International Law and Informal Lawmaking in Times of Antiglobalism and Populism” by Leuven Professor Jan Wouters (right), Jean Monnet Chair ad personam EU and Global Governance, Full Professor of International Law and International Organizations, Director of the Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies, and founding Co-Director of our summer school. Touching on concepts and issues introduced throughout the week, Wouters exposed shortcomings of classic international law. He further urged greater acceptance of the significance of informal lawmaking actors, norms, and processes, which form the core of global governance studies.

Leuven and Georgia Law students, faculty, staff, and friends then enjoyed a conference dinner, plus a live, and lively, screening of the Belgium Red Devils’ 2-1 World Cup victory over Brazil – then headed to Oude Markt to celebrate with other denizens of this lovely city.