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International Law Commission and role of subsequent practice as a means of interpretation under Articles 31 and 32 VCLT

1. Introduction Subsequent agreement and subsequent practice, as well as the method of evolutive interpretation, are vehicles of change in international law. Theoretically speaking, they can contribute to integrating a transformative process into the treaty when, as it continuously is, the international order is moving. Many of the treaties which constituted the international legal order...

Faut-il mettre la pratique dans des catégories? (à propos des travaux de la CDI sur l’interprétation des traités dans le temps)

1. Introduction Depuis quelque temps, la Commission du droit international des Nations Unies s’est fait une spécialité de dissiper les mystères qui, jusque là, faisaient le charme du droit international public: la coutume, le jus cogens, l’interprétation, bientôt peut-être les principes généraux du droit. Elle le fait selon ses méthodes de travail habituelles: approche analytique...

Subsequent practice in treaty interpretation between Article 31 and Article 32 of the Vienna Convention

Introduced by Béatrice I. Bonafé and Paolo Palchetti   In 2012 the International Law Commission started to work on ‘Subsequent agreements and subsequent practice in relation to interpretation of treaties’.  From 2013 to 2016 the Special Rapporteur, Georg Nolte, has handed down four reports where he distinguishes between ‘agreed subsequent practice’ and ‘other subsequent practice’...

The Pathology of a Legal System: Israel’s Military Justice System and International Law

‘International law is not designed to protect and grant rights to saboteurs and criminals. The defendants have no right except to stand trial in court, and be tried in accordance with the law and with the facts established by the evidence, in proceedings with the requirements of ethics and International Law…’[1]   1. Introduction Despite...

Enforcing Illegality: Israel’s Military Justice in the West Bank

1. Introduction The present article presents a critical overview of the main legal questions which arise from the Israeli military justice system in the West Bank. It commences from the inception of the system, focusing on the domestic Israeli approach to its juridical configuration and the manner in which this informed the interpretation of international...

The Israeli military justice system and international law

Introduced by Mariagiulia Giuffré, Peter Langford, Triestino Mariniello *   Military occupation exists within, and is regulated by, a substantive body of norms of international law. The questions of international law which arise from state military occupation are of enduring significance in relation to the form and extent of the legal regulation of this state...

Kantian Ethics in the Age of Artificial Intelligence and Robotics

1. Introduction Artificial intelligence and robotics is pervasive in daily life and set to expand to new levels potentially replacing human decision-making and action. Self-driving cars, home and healthcare robots, and autonomous weapons are some examples. A distinction appears to be emerging between potentially benevolent civilian uses of the technology (eg unmanned aerial vehicles delivering...

Human rights implications of autonomous weapon systems in domestic law enforcement: sci-fi reflections on a lo-fi reality

1. Autonomous Weapon Systems (AWS) and human rights: An introduction to the debate Novelists and filmmakers have been speculating on the interaction between human beings and robots for years. Isaac Asimov, in particular, devoted an important part of his bibliography to the issue. He created a world where robots are integrated in our society and...

Jus in bello and jus ad bellum arguments against autonomy in weapons systems: A re-appraisal

1. Introduction The ethical and legal implications of the development and use of weapons systems able to perform the critical functions of target selection and engagement autonomously (ie without any intervention by human operators) are currently in the spotlight. The issue has recently gained widespread media coverage with the launch, on 21 August 2017, of...

Coming Soon…? A reappraisal of the legal and ethical implications of Autonomous Weapons Systems (AWS) ahead of the first meeting of the CCW Group of Governmental Experts on Lethal AWS

Introduced by Elena Carpanelli and Nicole Lazzerini *     The emergence of a new generation of tech-devices, featuring forms of Artificial Intelligence (AI), appears more and more a ‘future present’, rather than science or cinematographic fiction. Several automated and algorithmic decision-making systems are already involved in our daily routine and scientific efforts have turned...

Determining the legal nature and content of EIAs in International Environmental Law: What does the ICJ decision in the joined Costa Rica v Nicaragua/Nicaragua v Costa Rica cases tell us?

The recent joined cases that brought Costa Rica and Nicaragua into conflict before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) concerned the two states’ activities in the border area. In particular, they focused on the dredging of some parts of the shared San Juan river by Nicaragua, and the construction of a road by Costa Rica...

Determining significance for EIA in International Environmental Law

Following the filing of an application in 2010, Costa Rica claimed that Nicaragua had dredged the San Juan River in violation of its international obligations; in 2011, Nicaragua filed its own application arguing that major road construction works alongside the same river were in violation of international environmental law. How to determine significance as the...