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Ratko Mladic War Crimes Trial Suspended Indefinitely PDF Print E-mail
International Law
Written by Viara Zaprianova-Marshall   
Thursday, 17 May 2012 23:54

Mladic trial delayed after "millions of pages" not disclosed to Mladic legal team.

The deadline for disclosure was last November and despite complaints from the defense in February.

UN prosecutors for the ICTY had failed to hand over the documents by the deadline last week. Incredibly, prosecutors had over 16 years while the 70 year-old, the one-time military commander accused of orchestrating the Srebrencia massacre of 8,000 men and boys, was on the run to prepare for the case.

The presiding judge Alphons Orie said he was indefinitely delaying the presentation of evidence that had been scheduled to start later this month due to "significant disclosure errors" by prosecutors in the discovery procedure presenting evidence to defense lawyers.

The case files relate to the first 24 witnesses that the prosecution had hoped to call between 29 May and July, when the court goes into recess, reported The Telegraph.

The UN Court estimates that “millions of pages” contained in “tens of thousands of documents” were not disclosed to the defense as they should have been under the UN court’s rules.

Photo credit: Associated Press

Earlier in the morning Mladic showed some of the arrogance of his brutal old days by applauding a film showing him threatening a Dutch UN peacekeeper in the hours leading up to the Srebrenica massacre of 8,000 Muslim men and boys in 1995.

Ratko Mladic led ethnic cleansing, war crimes trial told

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Australian and U.S. Legal and Political Views on International Criminal Justice and the Impact of the ICC PDF Print E-mail
Comparative-Law
Written by Viara Zaprianova-Marshall   
Saturday, 03 September 2011 00:44

 International Criminal Court – “…a major landmark for the international community and for the international justice”[1]

A critical comparative study of the Australian and U.S. legal and political views on international criminal justice and the impact of the ICC

I. Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court – History and Practice

 II. U.S. Objections to the Rome Statute

 III. Australian path – “all need to participate”

 IV. Implications of the ICC for the United States as a Non-member

 V. Membership benefits for Australia and the country’s growing role in the Asian-Pacific region.

 

 

 

This essay will explore the establishment of the ICC, its jurisdiction, principles and its implications for the international criminal law arena. The ICC is the world’s first permanent criminal court and its creation reflects an amazing international consensus. The second part is dedicated to the major constraints and objections that the U.S. Congress encounters and expresses regarding the ICC jurisdiction. Its concerns regarding the jurisdiction over nationals of non-parties, the “politicized prosecution”[2] , the “lack of Due process guarantees,”[3] and the fear of usurpation of the role of the U.N. Security Council.

 

In the third part, the research paper will present the commonalities and differences between the American and Australian legal philosophy, legislative history; the impact of becoming a member on the country’s foreign policy, the engagement in international criminal investigations and prosecutions, and the country’s new role in the international community.

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Netflix Attack On Consumer Privacy PDF Print E-mail
Privacy
Written by Viara Zaprianova-Marshall   
Wednesday, 28 September 2011 22:29

 

Netflix attack on Privacy Laws continue.

 

December last year Netflix had to cancel a sequel to a $1 million movie-recommendation contest, avoiding a potential courtroom drama over the privacy rights of its subscribers.

The company settled a lawsuit alleging Netflix's plans to release millions of movie-rental records that could have illegally exposed sensitive information about its subscribers' tastes and lifestyles.

The Federal Trade Commission also had raised questions about Netflix ability to protect customers' privacy.

Netflix intended to release the movie records without any names or other personal information attached to the data, but critics contended that the protections wouldn't be enough to guarantee anonymity. Those arguments were supported researchers and consumers who said they were able to go through data that Netflix released in its first movie-picking contest to identify certain people who rated movies.

The class-action lawsuit filed in the District Court in San Jose alleged  that Netflix's first contest, which ran from October 2006 through August 2009, had violated a Federal law prohibiting video rental firms from publicly sharing their customers' movie preferences.

Netflix argued that it released the data about its subscribers' movie ratings in order to improve its movie’s recommendation system by at least 10%. Of course the offer of a $1 million prize lured more than 51,000 contestants and generated a steady stream of free publicity for the company, based in Los Gatos.

Last week Netflix announced that it has launched a lobbying campaign against the federal Video Privacy Protection Act of 1988, which safeguards consumer video rental information. Netflix claims that the privacy law prevents Facebook users from posting information about Netflix on their Facebook pages.

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The Principle of Supremacy of European Community law and its practical effectiveness amongst Member States PDF Print E-mail
International Law
Written by Viara Zaprianova-Marshall   
Tuesday, 27 September 2011 22:26

 This Essay will consider the reasoning used by the European Court of Justice to justify the Supremacy of Community law and consequently the reaction of national courts to this assertion of supremacy.

The European Court of Justice (ECJ), as the guardian of legality and instrument of cohesion within the Community, has, from the start been in a strong position to define the status of Community law and to give it precedence when in conflict with the national legal systems of the various Member States.

The first case where the Court made a statement on the nature of European law is the famous case of Van Gend en Loos v. Netherlands (1963)[1] dealing with the principle of direct effect of EC Treaty provisions and the degree to which individuals can rely on such terms to challenge measures of national law. In that case the ECJ stated that:

 

“The objective of the EEC Treaty, which is to establish a Common Market, the functioning of which is of direct concern to interested parties in the Community, implies that this Treaty is more than an agreement which merely creates mutual obligations between the contracting states…

 

The Community constitutes a new legal order of international law for the benefit of which the states have limited their sovereign rights, albeit within limited fields, and the subjects of which comprise not only Member States but also their nationals”.

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Recognition of Fundamental Rights Within the EU PDF Print E-mail
Human Rights Law
Written by Viara Zaprianova-Marshall   
Thursday, 22 September 2011 23:37

On the Recognition of Fundamental Rights within the EU, the extent to which fundamental rights bind the Member States and the impact that the binding Charter of rights might have in this area.

 The human rights policies of the EU are overwhelmed by a paradox, as argued by Alston and Weiler. On one hand the Union is an active defender of human rights in both its internal and external affairs, and on the other hand, it lacks comprehensive and coherent policy at either level and serious doubts exist whether the institutions of the EU possess sufficient legal competence in relation to a wide range of human rights issues arising within the framework of Community policies.

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Victory For Equal Rights Protection - Chief District Court Judge Ware's Ruling PDF Print E-mail
Constitutional Law
Written by Viara Zaprianova-Marshall   
Monday, 29 August 2011 19:14

Chief U.S. District Court Judge James Ware backed the original ruling by Judge Walker that the voter-approved ban on same-sex marriage in the state was unconstitutional.

The new order maintains the controversy on track to an expected Supreme Court challenge, eventually next year.

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Did BART Break First Amendment Rights? PDF Print E-mail
National Security
Written by Viara Zaprianova   
Tuesday, 16 August 2011 03:36

On August 11, 2011, BART blocked the cell-phone reception of its commuters in San Francisco’s Civic Center Station, supposedly to prevent a civil protest to take place.

Today, the so called hacker group ‘Anonymous’ and protestors tried to bring down BART’s website and organized a peaceful protest at the Civic Center at 5pm which was gagged by the SF and BART police forces, but continued on the street of San Francisco.

Critics of the actions undertaken by BART have been compared to those undertaken by the criminal and anti democratic actions of Hosni Mubarak, who ordered the country’s communications to shut down in a desperate attempt to uphold his totalitarian regime.

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Accountability and Transparency of the Security Sector to the Parliament. Special Parliamentary Instruments and Methods of Democratic Control of the Security Sector PDF Print E-mail
National Security
Written by Viara Zaprianova   
Tuesday, 02 November 2010 22:07

The Security Sector represents an area of national politics which is particularly subjected to the system of checks and balances of governance in an open and democratic society. Since the security sector comprises the security forces themselves as well as the civilian authorities responsible for their use, the issue of security sector accountability and transparency leads far beyond mere civilian control over the military. The security sector, as encompassing the nation’s human and material means to use force, is comprehensively interwoven with the overall fabric of society in a political, economic, and sociological sense and therefore touches upon all facets of civil-military relations. The necessity to ensure accountability of those who hold executive responsibility in security and defense affairs derives from the immense power that rests with this bestowment and is mostly directed toward the legislative authority, the parliament, as the representative body of the people. To provide transparency with respect to how the nation’s means of force are administered rests with both major parts of national power, the executive and the parliament, and is primarily oriented toward the public.

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The Preservation of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict PDF Print E-mail
Comparative-Law
Written by Viara Zaprianova-Marshall   
Tuesday, 04 January 2011 22:04

 I. Introduction

 

“… it is a moral call on mankind to protect its cultural heritage – a moral call that involves our deepest understanding of aesthetics, and our deepest commitment to an ethic that may call upon us to sacrifice wealth, health, and sometime life itself, in order to preserve art …”[1]

The Preservation of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict

 

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On Civil Society and Democratic Deficit PDF Print E-mail
Constitutional Law
Written by Viara Zaprianova-Marshall   
Wednesday, 28 September 2011 18:39

The role of civil society and civil society organizations become more important and diverse than ever. First, it's necessary to say that the term civil society is used to refer to organizations positioned between state institutions and the private life of indiciduals and communities. It comprises variety of social movements and voluntary organizations. They may be independent of the government in which case they are referred to as NGO's or to have links and subsidies with state actors coming from the particular state budget.

What is the link between Civil Society, Democratic Governance and Globalization?

Globalization can be defined as networks of interdependence at worldwide distances - not just in the economic sphere. Markets have spread and tied people together, but environmental, military, social, and political interdependence have also increased ('The Arab Spring' for example).

On Civil Society and Democratic Deficit

Antiglobalization protesters have complained that international institutions are illegitimate because they are undemocratic. To fight this perception, global organizations had to increase transparency, create accountability, and redefine the norms and visions for global governance.

 

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Does the EU Suffer From A Democratic Deficit? PDF Print E-mail
International Law
Written by Viara Zaprianova-Marshall   
Tuesday, 27 September 2011 00:31

This paper will consider the evolution of the legislative process in the EU and to what extend the EU suffers from a democratic deficit. The author also elaborates on the possible suggestions for improvements.

 Democratic institutions and the representatives of the people in the EU, at both national and European level have the duty to connect Europe with its citizens. This is the starting condition for more effective and relevant policies. Democratic governance, better involvement, accountability and transparency were proclaimed to be strategic objectives of the Union.[i]

“…Within the existing Treaties of the Union must start adapting its institutions and establishing more coherence in its policies so that it is easier to see what it does and what it stands for. A more coherent Union will be stronger at home and a better leader in the world. It will be well placed to tackle the challenge of enlargement…”[ii]

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Rights of Alien Detainees held outside the U.S. PDF Print E-mail
International Law
Written by Viara Zaprianova-Marshall   
Thursday, 01 September 2011 17:32

The research paper will discuss the legal rights of alien detainees from Afghanistan and Iraq, captured and/or controlled by the U.S. Government, in unconventional warfare situations and held outside the U.S.

A critical review of the US Government reaction to the detained suspects and their right to a writ of habeas corpus will be argued in the context of the executive endorsement of different statutes and acts of the President of the United States and the judiciary review of these acts, and subsequent Supreme Court case law on the issue.

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Quaddafi's son arrested With ICC Warrant PDF Print E-mail
International Law
Written by Viara Zaprianova   
Monday, 22 August 2011 22:18

The Rebel Council Members leadership in Libya announced that insurgents had captured, Colonel Quaddafi's son. Seif al-Islam el-Quaddafi was giving a phone interview

to Al Jazeera television, confirming that he was under house arrest, when gunfire broke out and the line cut off.

"The revolutionaries stormed the television building...after killing the soldiers surrounding it. It is now under their control," the spokesman said. He was speaking after

television screens airing the Jamahiriyah station went blank.

A column of hundreds of rebel fighters and pickup trucks carrying rocket launchers moved through the Libyan capital towards the central Green Square on Monday, a

Reuters reporter in the city said.

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A comparison of American and European Contract Law PDF Print E-mail
Comparative-Law
Written by Viara Zaprianova-Marshall   
Monday, 08 November 2010 01:51

I. Introduction

UNIDROIT and UNCITRAL are model laws, drafted with the idea to being adopted by national legislators such as the UNCITRAL Arbitration model law.

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Constitutional and Legal Framework of Civil-Military Relations and Democratic Control of the Security Sector. PDF Print E-mail
Comparative-Law
Written by Viara Zaprianova   
Tuesday, 02 November 2010 21:46

The Constitution, the Laws, the Division of Powers, Civil Society and Its Institutions: Fundamental Democratic tools of ‘Guarding the Guardians’

The most striking characteristic of modern statehood is a paradox: the separation of powers and the monopolization of force. Any modern democratic constitution ensures that the legislative power, as the one making laws, is clearly separated from the executive power, as the one who executes the laws. With the modern state civil society has given itself a tool of coercion that assures the populace of security from both external and internal threats while, at the same time, giving them the opportunity to live out their freedoms and determine themselves within the boundaries of legal justice.

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