January 2022: Issue 2

International Human Rights

German court finds Syrian colonel guilty of crimes against humanity

Anwar Raslan, a former Syrian colonel who directed operations at a civil prison in Damascus, was sentenced to life in prison by a German court in Koblenz. This was the world’s first trial prosecuting the state-sanctioned torture in Syria by the Assad regime. This trial was significant for the thousands of Syrian refugees in Germany and Europe, as well as Syrians who continue to face war crimes under the Assad regime. To read more click here and here.

Bulgaria’s surveillance laws breach the EU’s human rights convention

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ruled on Tuesday that Bulgaria’s laws on covert surveillance, including the accumulation and access to communications data, violate Article 8 of the European Human Rights Convention. Bulgaria must now amend its domestic legislation to put an end to human rights violations and ensure compliance with the Convention or face penalties. To read more click here and here.

Aung San Suu Kyi jailed for four more years by the military junta

A military-run court in Myanmar found the exiled civil leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, guilty of charges such as possessing walkie talkies and violating COVID-19 regulations and sentenced her to four more years in prison. She has been taken into custody since the February military coup Myanmar faced and is facing plenty of charges, all of which she denies. To read more click here and here.

International Maritime Law

Following US criticism, China defends broad maritime claims with regards to the South China Sea

Following a new US government report that said Beijing’s claims to the South China Sea are almost entirely invalid, China defended its “historical rights” to the whole of the South China Sea. According to Chinese officials, the US report “Limits in the Seas” was an attempt to misrepresent and alter international law, mislead the public, cause division, and destabilise the regional scenario. The United States takes no official position on who owns what features in the sea, but maintains the absolute right to operate in what it insists are international waters, and remains an integral part of this conflict alongside China and six other governments. To read more click here and here.

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