Former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein has reportedly decided to run for the Iraqi presidency, hoping to regain his office and palaces through the democratic process. Hussein's lawyer, Giovanni di Stefano, has told a Danish newspaper that Hussein expressed the intention to him during one of the planning meetings preparing for his upcoming trial before the Iraqi Special Tribunal. Di Stefano stated that there was no possibility of the trial occurring prior to the election, and the nothing in international law prohibited Hussein from running. There is also something of a precedent: Slobodan Milosevic won a seat in the Serbian parliament in Decemeber 2003 while on trial for war crimes at The Hague. JURIST's Paper Chase has more on the Hussein trial here. From Turkey, Zaman has more.
In other international law news...
- The UN Secretary-General's special committee to consider Security Council reform says that it will be recommending the addition of about 9 new members to the Security Council. The new seats will include the so-called G4 of India, Japan, Brazil (official site in Spanish), and Germany, all of whom are pushing for something approaching permanent representation on the Council, as well as five other slots that are based on regional considertions. There have been calls for Council reform for the past 15 years, but Secretary-General Kofi Annan has told his committee that he wants specific proposals ready for presentation by December. The Times of India has more.
- The main opposition party in Turkey, the Republican People's Party, has called for an emergency session of the Turkish Parliament (official site in Turkish) to ensure that the proposed Penal Reforms are enacted before the European Commission files its report on Turkey's bid to enter the EU. The Parliament went into automatic recess last week and is not scheduled to begin again until October 1. The Commission report is scheduled to be released on October 6, too soon after the return of the Parliament to guarantee that the reform proposals are approved before the report release. JURIST's Paper Chase has background here. BBC has more.
- At the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugloslavia at The Hague, two more judges were sworn in today as ad litem members of the tribunal. Judges Hans Henrik Brydensholt (Denmark) and Albin Eser (Germany) will serve on upcoming trials. Read the official press release here.
- Brazil has become the first country ever to request for an extension of its continental platform under the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea. Earlier today, representatives of the Brazilian government met with UN officials to discuss the proposal. A country's continental platform is the area of ocean off its coasts that is within the exclusive jurisdiction of that country. Brazil (official site in Spanish) seeks to extend its platform out, opening up new possibilities for exploitation of the region's mineral wealth. The Brazilian government is optomistic about its chances for receiving the extension. Brazzil.com has more.