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News Roundup – 4-7th May 2015

May 7, 2015

Ryan Goodman: The perverse and unintended consequences of Serdar Mohammed. 

What can we do in 5 days? Aid workers sceptical of Saudi truce. 

Amnesty Report: ‘Death Everywhere: War Crimes and Human Rights Abuses in Aleppo’

UNRWA calls for protecting civilians in Yarmouk camp. 

More than 40 Syrian armed groups invited to Geneva talks. 

Warfare and judicial imperialism in the UK. 

Ex-rebels in CAR live in fear and rotting barracks. 

CAR: Armed groups agree to release child soldiers, says UNICEF. 

Burundi standoff threatens CAR stability. 

Crisis Group: Congo is democratic change possible?

Enough Project report: Congo’s Conflict Gold Rush: Bringing Gold into the Legal Trade in the DRC. 

Tanzanian UN peacekeepers killed in DRC. 

New Online Series on Humanitarian Law and Policy launched by PHAP

May 7, 2015

PHAPThis week PHAP  announced the launch of its Online Learning Series on Humanitarian Law and Policy. This series aims to provide an opportunity for continuous learning for those working in the humanitarian sector, as well as those interacting with humanitarian actors, to strengthen their understanding of legal and policy issues and to engage on topical and timely issues. The first session will be held on 21 May (see below for more info).

Each session will begin with a brief expert lecture on a specific IHL topic, followed by the opportunity for participants to engage directly with the presenter through an open Q&A. The sessions will cover a range of topics, and address various legal, political, and operational questions. The focus will be on the most significant and consequential issues for humanitarian actors, drawing from recent events, practitioner experiences, contemporary scholarship, new jurisprudence, and related legal developments. These online learning sessions are complementary to PHAP’s onsite courses and workshops on humanitarian law and policy. Some sessions serve as refreshers on core concepts while others provide supplementary opportunities for in-depth learning and discussion.

Following each session of the Online Learning Series on Humanitarian Law and Policy, members of the association will have the possibility to undergo a two-part assessment as part of the PHAP Continuous Learning Credits framework. The assessments are structured to allow members to both ensure that they have achieved the primary learning objectives of each session and to reflect on the topic of the session based on their own experience.
Upcoming sessions

  1. Introduction to IHL and its relevance for humanitarian actors, 21 May 2015
  2. IHL and Core Humanitarian Principles: humanity, neutrality, impartiality and independence, 3 June 2015
  3. The Fundamental Principles of IHL Regulating Hostilities: military necessity, distinction, and proportionality, 17 June 2015
  4. Qualification of Armed Conflict and Determining the Applicable Law, 8 July 2015
  5. Qualification of Situations: case studies from recent practice, 22 July 2015

Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict: Second Edition of ‘1612 Monitoring and Reporting Mechanism’

May 7, 2015

Resource Pack Cover ENG (4)Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict, a network of human rights and humanitarian organizations working together to protect the security and rights of children in conflict, has announced this week the second edition of its “1612 Monitoring and Reporting Mechanism. A Resource Pack for Non-Governmental Organizations”. It is available in English, French and Arabic and can be accessed on Watchlist’s website at

Originally launched in 2014, the Resource Pack offers NGOs the tools necessary to define whether, and how, to engage in the MRM in a way that strengthens both their programs, and the mechanism itself.

Throughout 2014, Watchlist, with support from various partners, disseminated the Resource Pack through field trainings on the MRM targeting national and international NGOs as well as UN agencies, in Mali, Democratic Republic of Congo, Myanmar, Nigeria, and South Sudan.

The second edition of the 1612 Resource Pack aims to integrate best practices and key learning gathered during these field trainings, which offered a unique opportunity for Watchlist to exchange with colleagues from around the world working to monitor, report and respond to children’s rights violations.

For additional information regarding the Resource Pack, or to share your feedback, please contact Gilles-Philippe Pagé, Partnerships Officer at Watchlist on Children and Armed Conflict:


News Roundup – Week of 25 April to 1 May 2015

May 1, 2015


Ukraine and pro-Russian separatists trade accusations as Minsk deal frays

Ukraine’s rebels mete out rough justice in authority vacuum



Child casualties highlight brutal cost of Yemen conflict as civilian deaths mount

Life under siege in Yemen: ‘Bullets and shrapnel came into the house’

Small steps forward? International pressure and accountability for atrocities in Sri Lanka

Air strikes kill civilians in Yemeni capital


Syria, Iraq, ISIS:

Islamists Seize Control of Syrian City in Northwest

Islamist rebels battle Syrian army near Assad heartland

Israel Kills Armed Militants From Syria in Strike on Golan

Islamist fighters said to have seized southern Syria crossing

Isis leader incapacitated with suspected spinal injuries after air strike

Baghdad officials blame Sunni displaced for wave of bombings



Taliban launch spring offensive with rocket attack on U.S. base

Appeal by Kunduz airstrike victims’ families fails

Afghan delegation heads to Qatar for talks with the Taliban


Other news:

Colombia and the Farc: are peace talks unravelling?

Ugandan ADF Rebel Commander Killed in Congo

Libya militia ‘launches air raids’ against IS

International Crisis Group report: The Chaos in Darfur

Debate in the NY Times: Should a Court Approve All Drone Strikes? (with, e.g., O’Connell, Hakimi and Guiora)

Israel indicts three soldiers for alleged crimes during Gaza war

Pakistanis see double standard in drone strikes

Myanmar ethnic rebels meet to discuss nationwide ceasefire

News Roundup – 19th-24th April 2015

April 24, 2015

General non-international armed conflict:

Interview with ICRC President on international engagement. 

Barking up the wrong tree: how not to save the British Armed Forces from legal defeat. 

Chatham house event video: Negotiating with Terrorists. 


In Bögota, UN chief says ‘peace is only option’ in Colombia. 

Are women key to peace in Colombia?


Pakistan uses hostage killing to underline risk of drone strikes.


Taliban launch Spring offensive. 


Syrian opposition groups reject UN sexual crimes accusations. 


Saudis launch new air strikes, as US concerns grow about Yemen war. 


Ethiopia mourns barbaric killing of Christians by ISIL.


Kenya’s anti-terror border wall sparks heated debate. 


International Crisis Group briefing: chaos in Darfur. 


CAR – decisive step in the transition process. 

Central African Republic establishes special criminal court. 


Ntaganda case to start in July 2015. 

South Sudan:

South Sudan army repels attack on Malakal. 


Ukraine crisis: rebel leader warns truce could fail. 

News Roundup – Week of 13-17 April

April 18, 2015


Colombia’s president wants rebels to set deadline for peace

International Crisis Group: A Dangerous Setback in Colombia

Geneva Call: New steps in Geneva Call’s discussions with the FARC-EP delegation in Havana


Nigeria/Boko Haram:

Amnesty International report: ‘Our Job is to Shoot, Slaughter and Kill’: Boko Haram’s reign of terror in North-East Nigeria

Boko Haram attacks 2 villages in Cameroon, kills 12

“I’ve seen the Taliban’s brutality in Afghanistan. Boko Haram might be worse.”



Ten said to be killed in new fighting in Libya’s Benghazi

Deaths reported in fighting near Libya’s capital

Talks resume between Libyan rivals in Morocco



‘The deepest circle of hell:’ Terrified Yarmouk residents describe ISIS raid

Rebels in Syria bombard government-held part of Aleppo

Syria Steps Up Airstrikes in Rebel-Held Areas of Aleppo

Tracking Syria’s deadly toxic chemical attacks

Thousands of Iraqis flee as Islamic State makes gains in Sunni heartland

Iraqis unearth mass graves in city where Islamic State ruled

Deadly blast hits US consulate in Erbil

ISIL fighters overrun several villages in western Iraq

According to UN Report Sexual Violence Becomes Favorite Tool Of Torture For Extremist Groups Like ISIS And Boko Haram

Iraqi forces fight IS militants at gates of Anbar provincial capital



Yemen conflict: UN places arms embargo on Houthi rebels

Yemeni rebel mortar attack kills 3 Saudi border guards

Al-Qaeda seizes airport in eastern Yemen

ICRC: ICRC prevented from delivering medical assistance to people in Maareb (Yemen)

Yemeni Army Tries to Safeguard Oil Fields as Qaeda Fighters Advance

Human Rights Watch: Fighting in Yemen Damages Hospital and Factory Airstrike Killed 31 Civilians

Human Rights Watch asks Saudi Coalition/US to Curb Civilian Harm in Yemen



Searching for Peace and Justice in Guatemala

Taking female armed rebels seriously

Human Rights Watch: Cluster Bombs Used in Sudan’s Nuba Mountains

U.S. Army Trainers Arrive in Ukraine

Ukraine military, rebels accuse each other of increased attacks

Deadly suicide bombings hit Afghanistan’s Jalalabad

Philippine government: Bangsamoro law will also result in disarmament of other armed groups


Two posts on Just Security on the killing, allegedly by a US drone, of Ibrahim al-Rubaysan, an alleged leading cleric of Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and the question whether such a cleric can constitute a legitimate military target: by Gabor Rona and Ryan Goodman

International Criminal Court Summer School 2015 – 15-19 June 2015

April 13, 2015

This year’s ICC Summer School at the Irish Centre for Human Rights will take place from 15-19 June 2015 at NUI Galway, Ireland. The Summer School comprises a series of intensive and interactive lectures over five days given by leading academics and legal professionals working at the International Criminal Court. Participants are provided with a detailed working knowledge of the establishment of the Court, its structures, operations, and applicable law. Specific topics covered include international crimes (genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity & aggression), jurisdiction, modes of liability, the role of victims and prosecutorial discretion. This year’s Summer School will include a special session on Palestine and the International Criminal Court, which will involve the participation of the Palestinian Ambassador to Ireland, Ambassador Ahmad Abdelrazek. The Summer School is suited to postgraduate students, legal professionals, journalists and staff of civil society or intergovernmental organisations.

The 2015 ICC Summer School faculty includes:

Professor William Schabas – Middlesex University & Irish Centre for Human Rights

Professor Kevin Jon Heller – School of Oriental and African Studies, London

Dr. Fabricio Guariglia – Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court

Dr. Mohamed M. El Zeidy – Pre-Trial Chamber II at the International Criminal Court

Dr. Rod Rastan – Office of the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court

Professor Ray Murphy – Irish Centre for Human Rights, NUI Galway

Professor Don Ferencz, Visiting Professor, School of Law, Middlesex University; Research Associate, Oxford University Faculty of Law Centre for Criminology

Dr. Kwadwo Appiagyei Atua – University of Ghana and University of Lincoln

Dr. Michael Kearney – School of Law, Sussex University

Dr. Noelle Higgins – Senior Lecturer, Law Department Maynooth University

Ms. Salma Karmi-Ayyoub – Barrister, London

Dr. Nadia Bernaz – School of Law, Middlesex University

Mr. John McManus – Canadian Department of Justice

Professor Megan A. Fairlie – Florida International University

Dr. Mohamed Badar – Northumbria University, United Kingdom

Dr. Shane Darcy – Irish Centre for Human Rights, NUI Galway

The deadline for availing of the early bird registration fee of €400 has been extended until 20 April 2015, with the fee for registrations after that date being €450. The closing date for registrations is 30 May 2015. The registration fee includes all course materials, all lunches and refreshments, a social activity and a closing dinner. The registration fee also includes a complimentary copy of: William A. Schabas, Introduction to the International Criminal Court (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011, 4th ed.).

To register and for more information, please visit the summer school website at:

Should you have any queries, please email:


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