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  • Author: Liam Halewood
  • Publication Date: 08-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Institution: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: In 2015, the United Kingdom (UK) became the first European State to incorporate extraterritorial targeted killing with drones into its counterterrorism framework. This article examines whether the UK’s obligations under the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) extend to such operations. Scholars have suggested not, based on a comparison of a drone strike to the circumstances of the landmark Bankovic case, which was inadmissible on jurisdictional grounds. Consequently, the UK policy is perceived as occurring in a legal black.hole outside the purview of the Convention. However, this article argues that the comparisons to Bankovic overlook the uniqueness of targeted killing operations and the context in which the UK policy is utilized. Considering the distinctiveness of the UK policy, this article re-evaluates the applicability of the ECHR and proposes that the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) could find a jurisdictional link between the UK and the victims of targeted killing, thereby avoiding the perceived legal black.hole.
  • Topic: Human Rights, Military Strategy, Drones, Extrajudicial Killings
  • Political Geography: United Kingdom, Europe
  • Author: Severin Meier
  • Publication Date: 12-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Institution: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: This article examines the extraterritorial application of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) during international armed conflict. After a brief discussion of the different historic origins of international human rights law and international humanitarian law (IHL), the article examines the test for establishing jurisdiction under Article 1 of the ECHR. A critical analysis of some contentious legal issues regarding derogations completes the picture of when jurisdiction is established. Subsequently, the article considers the interaction between the ECHR and IHL in international armed conflicts and concludes by arguing that a balance must be found between protecting human rights in international armed conflicts while not interfering unduly with IHL.
  • Topic: Human Rights, International Law, Conflict
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Valentin Schatz
  • Publication Date: 12-2019
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Institution: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: This article approaches the question of post-Brexit access of European Union (EU) Member States to the United Kingdom’s (UK) territorial sea fisheries by first discussing the pre-Brexit legal status quo under the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP) of the EU. Second, this article discusses the international legal framework for access to territorial sea fisheries that would apply if the UK withdraws from the EU in the absence of a future agreement. As Part II of the 1982 United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) does not contain provisions on fisheries access, this analysis focuses on the role of the 1964 London Fisheries Convention (LFC), bilateral voisinage agreements between the UK and EU Member States, potential acquired historic fishing rights of EU Member States in the UK’s territorial sea, and potential access rights derived from royal privileges. Next, this article addresses the relevance of the transitional arrangements contained in the latest draft withdrawal agreement of 2018, which was not, however, adopted by the UK. Finally, this article offers some conclusions as to the applicable legal framework for access of EU Member States to the UK’s territorial sea fisheries absent a new fisheries agreement between the EU and the UK, and potential ways to proceed in the future regulation of this issue.
  • Topic: International Cooperation, Treaties and Agreements, Territorial Disputes, European Union, Brexit
  • Political Geography: United Kingdom, Europe
  • Author: Till Patrik Holterhus
  • Publication Date: 12-2018
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Institution: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: This article demonstrates that Arts. 21 and 3 (5) of the Treaty on European Union (TEU) as well as Arts. 205, 207 (1), 208 (1), 209 (2) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU), legally oblige the European Union (EU) to promote the rule of law in its foreign trade and development policy. Furthermore, it is shown that, in the context of such promotion, the EU applies not a rudimentary but a sophisticated concept of the rule of law – quite similar to the concept of the rule of law that has developed within the Union. To fulfill the legal obligation to promote the rule of law abroad, the EU employs, as a key instrument, the legal mechanism of conditionality, not only through autonomous instruments but also in its contractual international relationships (carrot-and-stick policy). The EU’s foreign policy in the trade and development nexus, in particular when it comes to the promotion of the rule of law, can, therefore, be considered a process, to a large extent, determined and organized the of law.
  • Topic: International Law, International Trade and Finance, Sovereignty, European Union
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Floris Tan
  • Publication Date: 12-2018
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Institution: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: This article examines an underexplored avenue for the protection of the rule of law in Europe: Article 18 of the European Convention on Human Rights. This provision prohibits States from restricting the rights enshrined in the European Convention for any other purpose than provided for in the Convention. In this contribution, the author argues, based on a combination of textual, systematic and purposive interpretations of Article 18, that the provision is meant to safeguard against rule of law backsliding, in particular because governmental restrictions of human rights under false pretenses present a clear danger to the principles of legality and the supremacy of law. Such limitations of rights under the guise of legitimate purposes go against the assumption of good faith underlying the Convention, which presupposes that all States share a common goal of reinforcing human rights and the rule of law. Article 18 could therefore function as an early warning that European States are at risk of becoming an illiberal democracy or even of reverting to totalitarianism and the destruction of the rule of law. The article then goes on to assess the extent to which the European Court’s case-law reflects and realizes this aim of rule of law protection, and finds that whereas the Court’s earlier case-law left very little room for an effective application of Article 18, the November 2017 Grand Chamber judgment in Merabishvili v. Georgia has made large strides in effectuating the provision’s raison d’être. As the article shows, however, even under this new interpretation, challenges remain.
  • Topic: Human Rights, International Law, Rule of Law
  • Political Geography: Europe
  • Author: Tim Staal
  • Publication Date: 06-2016
  • Content Type: Journal Article
  • Journal: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Institution: The Goettingen Journal of International Law
  • Abstract: Post-treaty instruments (PTIs) are informal instruments adopted by consensus of the treaty parties as follow-up decision to a particular provision in a treaty. PTIs are potentially significant instruments for advancing environmental global governance, as the treaty parties may use them to transform indeterminate treaty provisions into more specific environmental rules and decisions. While a number of PTIs are rightly characterized as exercises of authority, this article seeks to demonstrate how certain environmental PTIs with rule-setting character (‘PTRs’) amount to evasions of authority by reducing international authority over States’ environmental policies, or alleviate rather than tighten the treaty parties’ obligations, through their content or legal status. First, some PTRs avoid authoritative language, requiring little or no concrete action by the treaty parties. Some treaty-based assignments to adopt PTRs are never even acted upon. Other PTRs simply water down the obligations of the treaty parties compared to the underlying treaty provisions. Second, PTRs possess an ambiguous legal status both in legal doctrine and in the practice of domestic and EU courts. The article further argues that consensual decision-making may well be at the root of this ambivalent practice. As a broader contribution to the debate about International Public Authority (IPA), the proposition is advanced that we need to scrutinize more carefully what kind and degree of authority an instrument exercises exactly – or not. Evasions of authority and alleviations of obligations – which can be conceived as a special type of exercising authority through inaction – have important implications for what future legal frameworks of international public law must deliver in terms of effective and legitimate procedural design.
  • Topic: Diplomacy, Environment, International Cooperation, Treaties and Agreements, Governance, European Union
  • Political Geography: Europe