International Law in Brief


International Law in Brief (ILIB) is a forum that provides updates on current developments in international law from the editors of ASIL's International Legal Materials.
| By: Şeymanur Yönt : October 22, 2021 |

On October 20, 2021, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Protection and Promotion of Freedom of Opinion and Expression, the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, the OAS Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression, and the African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR) Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Expression and Access to Information, issued a Joint Declaration on politicians, public officials, and freedom of expression. According to an OAS press release, the Declaration denounces hateful public statements by politicians and public officials. It recommends that states...


| By: Şeymanur Yönt : October 22, 2021 |

On October 5, 2021, the ECtHR ruled in Shavlokhova and Others v. Georgia that the application is inadmissible. According to an information note on the Court’s case law, the case concerned the Russian applicants’ complaint of violations with regard to Georgian armed forces’ military actions that took place during the conflict between the two states that took place on August 8- 9, 2008.

According to the ECtHR, the violations took place in and around the administrative capital of South Ossetia. The ECtHR stated that the area fell within Georgia’s territorial jurisdiction under...


| By: Şeymanur Yönt : October 20, 2021 |

On October 20, 2021, the Council of Europe (CoE) recommended to its member states a set of measures to “better protect children against radicalization for the purpose of terrorism.” According to a CoE press release, the recommendation, which was prepared by the Committee on Counter-Terrorism, focuses on the protection of the child and the need to develop preventive strategies against the radicalization of children. The recommendation calls for the involvement of first-line practitioners, civil society, and the private sector. It emphasizes the importance of adopting an evidence-based...


| By: Şeymanur Yönt : October 20, 2021 |

On October 20, 2021, the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (CESCR) published its findings on Azerbaijan, Bolivia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kuwait, and Nicaragua. According to a UN press release, the findings include aspects of the respective states’ implementation of the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (Convention). The CESCR, in its concluding observations on Azerbaijan, welcomes the adoption of the Law on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and makes various recommendations to Azerbaijan, including removing unduly restrictions on NGOs...


| By: Şeymanur Yönt : October 19, 2021 |

On October 18, 2021, the UN Special Rapporteur on promotion and protection of freedom of opinion and expression presented her report on gender justice and freedom of expression. According to a UN press release, the report explains the barriers and challenges to women’s freedom of expression, including gendered censorship and weaponizing “public morals.” The Special Rapporteur makes several recommendations to states including prohibiting gender-based violence and addressing gendered hate speech. Moreover, the Special Rapporteur makes recommendations to corporations, such as carrying out...


| By: Şeymanur Yönt : October 19, 2021 |

On October 19, 2021, the European Court of Human Rights published two judgments, Miroslava Todorova v. Bulgaria (in French only) (but see press release in English) and Vedat Sorli v. Turkey (in French only) (but see press release in English), on freedom of expression. In both judgments, the Court decided unanimously that there was a violation of freedom of expression. The Miroslava v. Bulgaria case concerned disciplinary proceedings against a former judge and the President of the Bulgarian Union of Judges. In that case, the Court ruled that “the disciplinary...


| By: Şeymanur Yönt : October 19, 2021 |

On October 18, 2021, according to a press release, the Inter-American Court of Human Rights issued its judgment in Bedoya Lima et al. v. Colombia (in Spanish only), holding that Colombia is responsible for Journalist Jineth Bedoya Lima’s kidnapping and torture. According to a press release (in English) from the Court, the Court found that Colombia violated the applicant’s rights to personal integrity, personal liberty, honor, dignity, and freedom of expression. The Court founded evidence of Colombia’s participation in the events, and found that its investigation of the matter was...


| By: Şeymanur Yönt : October 15, 2021 |

On October 13, 2021, over one hundred countries adopted Kunming Declaration on biodiversity. The countries made several commitments related to biodiversity such as ensuring an effective global biodiversity framework, developing and updating the national biodiversity strategies, strengthening the sustainable use of biodiversity, and enhancing “the global legal framework.” The Declaration will be submitted to the United Nations Environment Assembly during the second part of its fifth session, which will take place in early 2022.


| By: Şeymanur Yönt : October 14, 2021 |

On October 12, 2021, the UN Special Rapporteur on torture and inhumane treatment presented his report on the “significance of accountability to the absolute and non-derogable prohibition of torture and ill-treatment.” The report explained accountability of the state and the individual, accountability and prevention, accountability and reparation, and key challenges to accountability such as denial, obstruction, and torture and ill-treatment as a form of punishment. The Special Rapporteur made several recommendations, including criminalization of torture and ill-treatment, overcoming...


| By: Şeymanur Yönt : October 14, 2021 |

On October 12, 2021, the UN Human Rights Committee found that Paraguay violated the indigenous community’s right to traditional lands by failing to prevent and control the toxic contamination of traditional lands. As set out in a UN press release, the Committee’s decision [currently available in Spanish only] follows the complaint by the Campo Agua’e indigenous community about the use of fumigation, i.e., using chemical smoke to kill pests, in a close commercial farm. The community complained that the process killed their animals and plants, and had an adverse impact on the environment....