Groningen Journal of International Law

International Law Under Construction

President’s Note on Volume 5, Issue 2

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By Ferdinand Quist, Groningen Journal of International Lawboard@grojil.org

Dear reader,

This second issue in Volume 5 of the Groningen Journal of International Law provides another exciting new step in the development of the Journal. Some may have already caught a few glimpses here and there, but it is still an honour to properly announce our co-operation with University of Groningen Press (UGP)! Without getting too technical, UGP has provided us with an Open Journal System and taken on the backend work needed to export our publications to academic databases. Concretely this means that starting from this issue all articles will be published not on our own website, but on <https://ugp.rug.nl/grojil> instead. References to previous issues and articles on our website will gradually be redirected to the relevant external webpage on our UGP site. It goes without saying that all articles will still be made available on SSRN and other outlets. This is an incredible opportunity for the Journal to increase the discoverability of the work that the authors have entrusted us with and by extension increase the Journal’s exposure.

As another first for the Journal, this issue does not focus on a specific topic or central theme, but is rather a compilation of submissions on various topics of international law. It is a culmination of sorts of our efforts to include rolling and unsolicited submissions as introduced in the previous issue of this volume. This would of course not have been possible without earlier efforts to develop the Journal into a consistent and dependable outlet for academic legal writing.

Our Publishing Director and Managing Editor have also reintroduced the concept of ‘social editing’ for this issue. In short, this means that in the weekend of 18 and 19 November our Editing Committee gathered in a room at the University of Groningen (with some attending digitally) to edit their assigned articles and rely on the knowledge of their collective hive mind. This was a great experience for all involved and will hopefully contribute to a stronger sense of community and a more engaging experience overall for editors at the Journal.

Other branches of the Journal have also increased their efforts during this period. The editorial team in charge of ‘International Law Under Construction’, the Journal’s international law blog, has attracted regular new content on topical issues. While still relatively new, much of their efforts are now starting to pay off and the project remains a promising area for future growth for the Journal.

The PR Committee organised an admission-free screening of ‘Syria’s Disappeared – The Case Against Assad’ last November which was attended by guest speakers dr. Antenor Hallo de Wolf, Benjamin Dürr, and, one of the subjects of the documentary, Mazen Alhummada. The Q&A session afterwards was as informative as it was inspiring, and I would once again like to thank our guest speakers and attendees for their participation. I am proud of the work the Committee has done under the guidance of our Promotional Director to organise this event and I look forward to seeing what happens next!

Returning to the issue at hand, the first article was written by Aristi Volou and examines the extent of protection of socio-economic rights by the civil and political legal orders of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) and the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR); and the UN Human Rights Committee (HRC) and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). The author focuses in particular on various techniques grounded in protection through the right to life.

In the following article, Douglas de Castro exposes imperialistic narratives in international environmental law, and thus a disconnect between developed and developing countries, by building a theoretical framework based on feminist theory tested by analysis of text, subtext, and context of environmental treaties.

Amrita Chakravorty analyses present issues surrounding nuclear disarmament efforts and looks to the future of nuclear disarmament considering the current chasm between nuclear weapon states and non-nuclear weapon states in their response to these issues in the third article.

In the fourth article, Ivan Mark Ladores examines the potency of analogous application of the legal framework developed in Leghari v Federation of Pakistan to hold the Philippine government accountable in climate change litigation for failing to protect the right to life.

This is followed by a submission from Natalia M. Luterstein on the flexibility of the rules of interpretation of the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties (VCLT). The rules appear to accommodate the different approaches developed in the determination of individual responsibility under international criminal law and that adopted for the determination of state responsibility under the Genocide Convention.

Sean Shun Ming Yau argues in the sixth article that the classification of an intra-State situation as ‘terrorism’ by said State bears little legal implication for the judicial assessment of the nature of the conflict and the applicability question of international humanitarian law.

The next submission from Jean Pierre Mujyambere analyses the obstacles victims of human rights violations committed by multinational corporations face in their access to effective remedies in African Union Member States by studying three relevant cases and pointing out the difficulties in providing ‘African solutions to Africa’s problems’ in this context.

Empire Hechime Nyekwere sets out to review the Global Environmental Facility (GEF) in the next article and in particular its role within existing structures of international environmental financing, and in turn provides some recommendations to reposition the GEF as a more central figure in that field.

In the penultimate article, Ravindra Pratap comments on the evolution of jurisprudence of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) concerning provisional measures in the Jadhav Case and the perceived shift in India’s attitude towards international adjudication in the case.

The issue concludes with a submission from Tineke Strik on the European Union’s (EU) Global Approach to Migration and Mobility (GAMM) and its potential impact on policies in third countries and on the human rights of migrants. The article touches on the viability of the EU-Turkey deal to serve as a blueprint for future readmission agreements.

In closing, I want to thank everyone at the Journal for their involvement during the past year and the Departments of International Law, European and Economic Law, and Criminal Law and Criminology at the University of Groningen for their financial support.

Happy reading!

Ferdinand Quist
President and Editor-in-chief
Groningen Journal of International Law

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