ILA Conference 2016 – Johannesburg – Update

The 77th ILA conference will be taking place in Johannesburg, South Africa, from 7-11 August 2016. The President of the South African Branch, which is organising the conference, has sent the following update to the Australian Branch:

“The 77th Biennial Conference of the International Law Association, which is scheduled for 7 – 11 August 2016 in Johannesburg, will mark the second time only for a biennial conference to take place on the African continent in the almost 150 year history of the Association. Expectations are therefore high that the members of the historically dominant ILA constituencies in the North will attend the conference in substantial numbers in the interest of providing a platform for the establishment of a community of international law scholars that is more representative of the regions of the world than is currently the case.

Apart from this imperative, and in addition to the reporting sessions of some thirty ILA committees and study groups, the programme offers parallel sessions on issues of regional and global interest and significance. These include the UN report on Africa’s illegal capital flight; harmonization efforts in international commercial law; BRICS in international law; the peace and security architecture of the African Union; automated weapon systems and international law; marine bio-diversity beyond areas of national jurisdiction; investor – state dispute resolution; nuclear weapons, non-proliferation and contemporary international law; the law of armed conflict in Africa; and international criminal law.

Leisure options abound. Pre- and post-conference tours to the spectacular Victoria Falls and to Cape Town are available. In Johannesburg and surroundings delegates have the option to visit game farms, the Constitutional Court, the Apartheid museum, SOWETO and Liliesleaf Farm where senior members of the ANC were arrested in 1963 for plotting the overthrow of the Apartheid government.

The members of the South African Branch of the ILA have invested a lot of time and energy in putting this conference together in adverse circumstances. We hope that we can count on the patronage of our fellow ILA members in other branches.”

All members and subscribers are encouraged to attend this significant conference. To register, visit

ILA Event – Sydney – International Law and Sea Level Rise, 9 March 2016

On 9 March 2016, the Andrew & Renata Kaldor Centre for International Refugee Law, the International Law Association (Australian Branch) and the UNSW Environmental Law Group will co-convene an expert panel discussion on International Law and Sea Level Rise: Human Rights, Displacement, Maritime Zones and Biodiversity.

The panel of expert speakers include:

  • Associate Professor Stephen Humphreys, LSE: international human rights law;
  • Professor Jane McAdam, UNSW: international law and forced migration; and
  • Professor Rosemary Rayfuse, UNSW: international environmental law and law of the sea.

The event will be chaired by Christopher Ward SC, President of the Australian Branch of the International Law Association.

The event will start at 1 pm and finish at 2 pm and will be held at the Law Staff Common Room, Level 2, Law Building UNSW (please see reception on Level 2 for directions).

The event is free. To register pleaseclick here.

ILA Event – Sydney – Peter Nygh Hague Conference Internship Award and 10 Year Anniversary

On 15 February 2016, a reception was held in Sydney at the offices of Baker & McKenzie to mark the 10th anniversary of the Peter Nygh Hague Conference Internship and to present the 2016 Peter Nygh Hague Conference Internship to Ms Reyna Ge.

The presentation was made by The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG in the company of special guests Dr Willem Cosijn, Consul-General of the Netherlands, the Hon Mr Phillip Ruddock MP, Australia’s Special Envoy for Human Rights, Dr Christopher Ward SC, President of the ILA Australian Branch, Melissa Conley Tyler, National Executive Director of the Australian Institute of International Affairs, and Nicola Nygh, representing the family of the late Hon Dr Peter Nygh AM.

Ms Ge is a recent graduate of the University of New South Wales, and will be the 11th Peter Nygh intern to be sent to the Hague Conference on Private International Law, where she will contribute to the work of the organisation on the development of a new multilateral treaty on the cross-border enforcement of civil and commercial judgments.

The Peter Nygh Hague Conference Internship is an award in memory of Dr Nygh, a leading international lawyer, former judge of the Family Court of Australia and an Australian delegate to and rapporteur of the Hague Conference. In 2002, Dr Nygh was appointed a Member of the Order of Australia in part for service to international law, particularly through honorary assistance to the Hague Conference.

The award provides a post-graduate student or graduate with the rare opportunity to travel to The Hague and work in the area of private international law.

The ILA Australian Branch is proud to support the Peter Nygh Hague Conference Internship, together with the Australian Institute of International Affairs, and is delighted to join in celebrating this significant milestone and the 2016 award to Ms Ge.

For more on the Peter Nygh Hague Conference Internship, click here. For more on the current work programme of the Hague Conference, click here.

ILA Event – Sydney – End of Year Function

On Wednesday, 9 December 2015, the ILA (Australian Branch) is hosting an end of year function in Sydney. The event will feature presentations on the work of various international committees and study groups, as well as a talk by Dr Ralph Wilde entitled ‘Dilemmas Promoting Global Economic Justice through Human Rights Law’.

Drinks and canapes will be provided. For details of this event, see this flyer. If you wish to attend, please register by email to

ILA Event – Canberra & Sydney – Work of Hague Conference on Private International Law

The ILA is pleased to announce presentations in Canberra and Sydney by Mr Philippe Lortie, First Secretary of the Hague Conference on Private International Law. The Hague Conference is a global inter-governmental organisation that works to achieve cross border co-operation in civil and commercial matters.

Mr Lortie will speak about the current work of the Hague Conference as well as the Peter Nygh Hague Conference Internship, which is awarded each year to a graduate or post graduate student of an Australian law school by the ILA (AB) and the Australian Institute of International Affairs.

Canberra event

12.30 pm on 16 November 2015 at the offices of the Attorney-General’s Department, 4 National Circuit, Barton ACT.

Lunch will be provided.

Please RSVP to the Secretary of the ILA at by Thursday, 12 November 2015.

The event flyer is available here.

Sydney event

6.00 pm for a 6.15 pm start on 19 November 2015 at Baker & McKenzie, Level 27, AMP Centre, 50 Bridge Street, Sydney NSW.

Please RSVP to Patricia Kam ( by Monday 16 November 2015.

The event flyer is available here.

Global Economic Law Network Workshop – Melbourne – TPP Revealed

The Global Economic Law Netowrk is holding a workship on Friday 13 November 2015 on the Trans-Pacific Parternship (TPP).

At this one-day workship, following immediately after the expected release of the agreed treaty text in early November, experts will present their analysis of the TPP on key issues of interest to the legal profession and their clients.

View the program here.

Tickets are $395 and places are limited. Please click here to register for this event.

Should you have any questions, please contact Ms Vesna Stefanovski at



ILA and National Centre for Indigenous Studies Event – Canberra – The International Law Context of Recent Developments in Indigenous Policy in Australia

The ILA and the National Centre for Indigenous Studies are holding a seminar that will consider Indigenous policy in Australia set against Australia’s international human rights obligations.

The event will be held from 5 – 7 pm on 30 October 2015 at the Hedley Bull Centre Lecture Theatre 1 at the Australian National University.

The speakers are Professor Mick Dodson, Mr Greg Marks and Dr Sean Kerins.

Please register via EventBrite.

Enquiries may be made to

The event flyer can be accessed here.

Asian Law Centre Event – Melbourne – The China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (ChAFTA), Legal Services & The Regional Context

The Asian Law Centre at the Melbourne Law School is holding a seminar on 29 October 2015 on the recent China-Australia Free Trade Agreement (more details available here).  The subject of the seminar is the effect of the free trade agreement on legal services between China and Australia and how these developments fit into a regional context.

The seminar is being hosted at King & Wood Mallesons and features a number of speakers from across the legal spectrum:

  • Dene Yeaman from DFAT, who was the lead negotiator on Services;
  • Andrew Godwin from Melbourne Law School;
  • Arjuna Nadaraja from the Law Council of Australia;
  • David Olsson, from King & Wood Mallesons; and
  • Molina Asthana from VGSO, who is also the president of the ILA Australia’s Victorian branch.

For readers interested in the effects of free trade agreements on the legal industry and trade of legal services, Molina Asthana has previously published an article at the ILA Reporter on this topic.

LIV Event – Melbourne – International Commercial Arbitration Moot 2015

The Law Institute of Victoria is holding the International Commercial Arbitration Moot. The moot is designed to provide an opportunity for penultimate and final year university students, law graduates and new solicitors to exercise and improve their advocacy skills in an international arbitration.

Participation in the moot is free. The preliminary round is being held on 15 October 2015 at 5.30 pm.

For further information and registration click here.

Melbourne Journal of International Law releases Issue 16(1)

The Melbourne Journal of International Law (MJIL) has released Issue 1 of Volume 16, which is available publicly on its website. MJIL is a student-edited, generalist international law journal at the University of Melbourne, and is published twice a year.

Issue 16(1) contains the following articles, which may be of interest to ILA Reporter readers:

  • Banal Crimes against Humanity: The Case of Asylum Seekers in Greece, by Ioannis Kalpouzos and Itamar Mann. This article considers actions by Greek and European border agency agents against asylum seekers in Greek detention facilities and whether they may constitute crimes against humanity under the Rome Statute.
  • Ebola: A Threat to the Parameters of a Threat to the Peace?, by Anna Hood. Hood’s article looks at UN Security Council Resolution 2177, which declared the Ebola outbreak in West Africa to be a ‘threat to the peace’ under article 39 the UN Charter. Hood argues that, having for the first time recognised a health issue as a threat to the peace, the Security Council has substantially expanded the scope of the term. Hood considers what new limits there may be on article 39 given this expansion.
  • What Happened to the International Community? R2P and the Conflicts in South Sudan and the Central African Republic, by Spencer Zifcak. The article examines the conflicts in South Sudan and the Central African Republic and the responses of the international community to the intra-state violence that has occurred. Zifcak seeks to explain why the implementation of any doctrine of responsibility to protect to the situations was ultimately insufficient.
  • The Ascendancy of the Lex Loci Delicti: The Problematic Role of Theory in Australian Choice of Tort Law Rules, by Robert Pietriche. This article considers choice of law issues in the context of Australian High Court decisions. Pietriche contends that exclusive reference to the lex loci delicti (the law of the place of the tort) when determining choice of law is an unsatisfactory approach that has at its origins the failure of the High Court’s theoretical approaches in important cases.
  • LGBTI Activism Influencing Foreign Legislation, by Giulia Dondoli. This article looks at the efficacy of LGBTI NGOs participating in transnational advocacy. Dondoli explores examples in Australia and the United Kingdom before looking at potential negative effects of NGO advocacy.
  • Of Souls, Spirits and Ghosts: Transposing the Application of the Rules of Targeting to Lethal Autonomous Robots, by Tetyana (Tanya) Krupiy. The article examines the rules of targeting and their application to the development of ‘lethal autonomous robots’. Krupiy analyses the current employment of three types of robots and their compliance with targeting rules. She describes the decision-making qualities such robots would need so that they could follow the rules of targeting.
  • The Fight against Hooliganism in England: Insights for Other Jurisdictions?, by Alexandra Veuthey and Lloyd Freeburn. This article analyses the effectiveness of the United Kingdom’s regulatory responses to organised group violence and whether their approach has been as successful in other European countries.
  • The Italian Constitutional Court’s Ruling against State Immunity when International Crimes Occur: Thoughts on Decision No 238 of 2014, by Marco Longobardo. The case note explores the 2014 decision of the Italian Constitutional Court, which ruled on the constitutionality of legislation created to implement the ICJ’s 2012 decision Jurisdictional Immunities of the State [2012] ICJ Rep 100. That legislation required Italian judges to deny jurisdiction for trials relating to Nazi crimes in the 1940’s, but the Court ruled it unconstitutional as it limits access to justice. The Court determined that Italy’s judiciary would not implement the international law of state immunity when it is invoked at a trial for international crimes.
  • Privacy in the Digital Era: Human Rights Online?, by Daniel Joyce. The commentary examines the UN General Assembly’s 2014 resolution The Right to Privacy in the Digital Age and uses it a springboard to discuss whether human rights law is successfully being adapted to the modern reality of the digital age.
  • Book Review by Milena Sterio of Self-Determination and Secession in International Law edited by Christian Walter, Antje von Ungern-Sternberg and Kavus Abushov. The book is a collection of essays on questions of self-determination and rights to secession. It is divided in to three parts: Part I addresses the general legal questions around these concepts and recent decisions such as the ICJ advisory opinion, Accordance with International Law of the Unilateral Declaration of Independence in respect of Kosovo [2010] ICJ Rep 403; Part II focuses on case studies from the former Soviet Union such as Transnistria, South Ossetia and Nagorno-Karabakh; and Part III presents ‘comparative studies of secessionist conflicts’ such as Kosovo, Western Sahara and the Crimea.

The Editors encourage readers to let us know of other publications and periodicals on international law by Australian institutions. It is an important goal of the ILA Reporter and the International Law Association in Australia to promote greater awareness of the work of international legal practitioners and academics.