top of page

International Legal News - 17 June 2024

Updated: Jul 1

The following media round up on international and foreign policy issues from around the world for the period of 10 to 17 June 2024.


Guernica 37 will provide weekly media updates from the International Criminal Court, European Court of Human Rights, United Nations, European Union and other sources. Should you wish to contribute or submit a media summary, opinion piece or blog, please send to Ned Vucijak at for consideration.


Round up on international and foreign policy issues from around the world
Guernica 37 International Legal News

African Criminal Court - 15 June 2024


Angola has become the first African Union member state to ratify the statute of the African Court of Justice and Human Rights, known as the Malabo Protocol, which aims to expand the court's mandate to include criminal jurisdiction over certain international crimes, alongside human rights cases. However, the protocol has been criticised for provisions granting immunity to serving African heads of state and other senior officials, which could undermine the rule of law. Fourteen other AU countries still need to ratify the statute before it enters into force.



India - 15 June 2024


Indian author Arundhati Roy is being prosecuted for her 2010 comments supporting Kashmiri independence and criticising India's actions in the region. The prosecution has sparked debates over free speech and governmental intolerance of dissent. Roy has been a vocal critic of the Indian government, and her prosecution coincides with a broader crackdown on dissenting voices; notably, in her latest writings, she has warned of the rise of an authoritarian state in India and the shrinking space for democratic expression.



Egypt - 15 June 2024


Amnesty International implored Egypt to respond to calls for release of over 123 people detained for their work in expressing solidarity with Palestinians, including protesters and activists. Many of those detained face pre-trial investigations on charges like terrorism and spreading false news, with reports of sexual assault and other abuses in police custody. Amnesty urges immediate release of detainees, investigation of abuse complaints, and accountability for those responsible.



Serbia - 15 June 2024


The International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) urges Serbia to halt the extradition of Belarusian filmmaker Andrey Gnyot, who faces severe risks of torture and ill-treatment in Belarus. Gnyot, a political activist, was detained in Serbia under a politically motivated Interpol warrant. Extraditing him would violate Serbia’s international human rights obligations, given the documented abuse of political prisoners in Belarus.



Iran - 15 June 2024


Swedish EU diplomat Johan Floderus has been freed from an Iranian prison as part of a prisoner swap deal. Floderus, who was detained in Iran in 2021 on espionage charges, was released in exchange for an unnamed Iranian national held in Sweden. His release concludes prolonged negotiations and highlights ongoing diplomatic efforts to address detentions of foreign nationals in Iran.



Palestine - 15 June 2024


Fighting in Rafah, Gaza, has intensified with the deaths of eight Israeli soldiers, marking one of the deadliest days for Israeli forces since the start of the conflict. The battle, part of Israel's ongoing operations against Hamas, has led to significant casualties and the displacement of many civilians. The UN has warned of a worsening humanitarian crisis as access to aid is severely restricted due to the closure of key crossings​



UN Special Adviser of the Secretary on the Prevention of Genocide - 14 June 2024


The UN's top genocide prevention official, Alice Nderitu, warned that hate speech poses a significant threat to global peace and security, often targeting the most vulnerable. She stressed that hate speech reinforces discrimination, dehumanization, and marginalization, and combined with disinformation, it can lead to severe crimes like genocide and war crimes. Nderitu called for robust measures to address hate speech while ensuring that efforts do not infringe on freedom of expression.



NATO - 13 June 2024


NATO will take over part of the US-led initiative in coordinating military aid to Ukraine, aiming to ensure consistent support regardless of the outcome of the upcoming US presidential election. This shift, involving up to 500 NATO soldiers, is intended to "Trump-proof" the Ukraine Defense Contact Group, ensuring continued aid and training for Ukraine. While NATO will coordinate logistics and training, the US will retain political leadership of the group.



Thailand - 13 June 2024


Human Rights Watch urged Thailand to release Y Quynh Bdap, a Montagnard activist and refugee, and to halt his extradition to Vietnam, where he faces the risk of an unfair trial and ill-treatment. Bdap, co-founder of Montagnards Stand for Justice, was arrested in Bangkok on immigration charges and is being sought by Vietnam on terrorism charges related to riots in Dak Lak province. HRW stresses that extraditing him would violate international law principles against refoulement.



European Court of Justice - 13 June 2024


The European Court of Justice has ordered Hungary to pay a lump sum of 200 million euros and a daily penalty of 1 million euros for failing to comply with a 2020 judgment regarding EU asylum policy. The original judgment found Hungary in breach of EU law by restricting access to international protection, unlawfully detaining asylum seekers, and failing to allow them to remain in Hungary while their appeals were pending. The Court noted Hungary's continued non-compliance, except for closing transit zones, and highlighted that Hungary's actions severely undermine EU law's unity, solidarity, and fair responsibility-sharing among Member States. The case is referred to as Commission v Hungary (Reception of applicants for international protection II).



UN Special Representative for Children and Armed Conflict - 13 June 2024


The United Nations Secretary General has added the Israeli armed forces to its "list of shame" for grave violations against children in armed conflict, citing 5,698 violations including killing, maiming, and attacks on schools and hospitals. This decision follows years of documented child casualties attributed to Israeli forces, with over 8,700 children affected between 2015 and 2022. The report also includes violations by Palestinian armed groups and highlights a significant increase in global violations against children in 2023.



Darfur, Sudan - 12 June 2024


The conflict in Al Fashir, Darfur, has escalated as the Rapid Support Forces (RSF) advance, trapping civilians and causing severe humanitarian issues. The city, a strategic location and refuge for many displaced persons, is cut off from critical resources due to ongoing fighting, which includes heavy weaponry in urban areas. Reports indicate significant civilian casualties and damage to infrastructure, with warnings from the UN about the risk of genocide. In excess of 5 million people are at risk from imminent death by starvation.



Ukraine - 12 June 2024


At least nine people have been killed and 29 injured, including five children, in a Russian missile strike on the southern Ukrainian city of Kryvyi Rih, according to local officials. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has expressed condolences and emphasized the need for strengthened air defences, while emergency services continue to search through the wreckage with the aid of search dogs and firefighters battling fires at the scene.



Armenia - 12 June 2024


Clashes between police and protesters erupted in Yerevan over a border demarcation deal with Azerbaijan, leading to the use of stun grenades by authorities. At least 101 individuals sought medical assistance, with 32 still hospitalized, 17 police officers injured, and 98 people detained as the Armenian Investigative Committee opened a criminal case into violence against law enforcement.



Russia - 12 June 2024


The United States, in coordination with G7 nations, announced an extensive array of new sanctions targeting Russia’s military-industrial base and its efforts to circumvent existing sanctions. These measures, involving nearly 300 new sanctions, aimed to cripple Russia's capacity to sustain its war against Ukraine by targeting critical sectors such as energy, metals, and manufacturing, as well as third-country entities that assisted Russia, particularly in China and other nations. Additionally, the G7 focused on preventing financial institutions, including those in countries like China, from using Russia’s SPFS system to bypass sanctions, while also exploring the use of frozen Russian assets to aid Ukraine.



UN sanctions regimes - 12 June 2024


The UN extended the mandates of the Ombudsperson and the Monitoring Team of the ISIL (Da’esh) and Al-Qaida sanctions regime for 36 months until May 2027. The listing criteria were amended to include acts involving sexual and gender-based violence, abduction, and trafficking in persons used as tactics of terrorism by ISIL, Al-Qaida, and associated entities. Additionally, the listing of Shahab al-Muhajir, the leader of ISIL-K, was amended to include further identification information.



Israel / Palestine - 12 June 2024


A U.N. inquiry into the early months of the Gaza war accused both Israel and Palestinian armed groups of committing war crimes, and stated that Israel's conduct included crimes against humanity. As a Commission of Inquiry of three-persons led by former U.N. human rights chief Navi Pillay, it provided the most detailed U.N. examination of the events since the October 7 attacks. Although the report itself carries no penalties, it offers a legal analysis of the actions during the war that would likely be considered in international judicial proceedings.



Venezuela - 11 June 2024


The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) reported on the practice of short-term enforced disappearances in Venezuela. The ICJ analysed the report of September 2023 of the Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Venezuela (FFM) and its finding that Venezuela engaged in the practice of short-term enforced disappearances as a means to suppress dissent. This tactic involves the state arbitrarily detaining individuals for short periods, even for only a few hours, without acknowledging their detention, often to intimidate or extract information under duress. The ICJ calls for urgent measures to end these violations, ensure accountability, and provide justice and reparation for the victims.



bottom of page