Blog

New Zealand Supreme Court Recognises Fiduciary Duties To Enforce Collective Indigenous Rights

David V Williams - 22nd March 2017

Judgments were delivered by the New Zealand Supreme Court on 28 February 2017 in Wakatu v Attorney-General. The High Court and Court of Appeal decisions had relied on the notion that “political trusts” between the Crown and indigenous Maori at the outset of colonialism were political compacts unenforceable in law. The Supreme Court reversed the […]

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Australia’s Deportation of Asylum Seekers Pending Determination of their Claims to Refugee Status

William Phillips - 21st March 2017

The Australian Government has made no secret of its mission prevent the arrival of thousands of ‘unauthorised’ immigrants on its shores, ostensibly to thwart people smuggling (see the discussion here, here, and here). But despite its endeavours to develop ever more drastic measures to achieve this objective, the Commonwealth Government has always attempted to maintain […]

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France Risks Violating the Right to Freedom of Expression with New Abortion Law Proposals

Laurence Wilkinson - 17th March 2017

France is set to introduce a controversial new law which criminalizes the online ‘obstruction’ of abortion. The legislation will extend existing provisions that have made it a criminal offence in France to physically intimidate or pressure a woman with a view to stopping her from having an abortion. The original law was intended to prevent […]

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A Controversial Judgment of the Spanish Constitutional Court: Excluding Irregular Migrants from Free Healthcare

Tania Abbiate - 14th March 2017

Last July, the Spanish Constitutional Court issued a contentious judgment in one of a number of pending constitutional challenges to a modification to the Spanish national health-care system. The changes to the healthcare system mainly concern the move from a universal healthcare system to an insurance-based one, but only for certain people. The number of […]

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A Gap opens for South Africa to do Right on the ICC

Max du Plessis - 12th March 2017

The South African government deposited on 7 March 2017 with the UN Secretary General a document that is as embarrassing as it is telling.  The document is headed: “South Africa: Withdrawal of Notification of Withdrawal”.  It comes on the back of a successful challenge in the High Court to the government’s unilateral and surprise lodging […]

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Improving Legal Literacy in the Struggle for the Right to Education

Faranaaz Veriava - 10th March 2017

On 15 February 2017, a partnership of civil society organisations that have been involved in rights-based struggles for access to a quality basic education launched a Basic Education Rights Handbook. The initiative has been led by the public interest organisation Section27.  The partner organisations that have contributed to the Handbook are: The Equal Education Law […]

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What the Trump Presidency Means For Gender Discourse Development

Anne Marie Lofaso and Nicholas F Stump - 8th March 2017

The Trump Administration’s gender-related policies have been characterized by some as a “war against women.” An analysis of these policies—as set within the broader socio-political context of President Trump’s campaign and the tumultuous post-election landscape—demonstrates that considered projects on gender discourse development are required. Such projects should be steeped in intersectionality, robust egalitarianism, and a […]

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Judge Gorsuch’s Academic Pedigree

Nicholas Bamforth - 7th March 2017

In articles published on 4th February 2017, the Times and Guardian newspapers drew attention to the intellectual influence of Oxford legal theorist John Finnis on U.S. Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch. Both newspapers highlighted Finnis’s deeply conservative views on the legal rights of LGBTQ citizens, including his opposition to same-sex marriage. Finnis is one […]

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China’s New Circuit Tribunals Allow Tighter Control of Judiciary

George G. Chen - 6th March 2017

China’s new system of circuit tribunals makes access to the justice system more convenient for ordinary citizens. But the new tribunals also make sure that the Communist Party retains firm control over the judiciary. Chinese citizens no longer need to travel far to bring a lawsuit to the Supreme People’s Court. On 21 January 2017, […]

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