International brief ~ Nigeria proposes African tribunal for Sudan News
International brief ~ Nigeria proposes African tribunal for Sudan

[JURIST] In Thursday's international brief, Nigeria [government website], acting on behalf of the African Union [official website], has proposed the creation of an African war crimes tribunal that would prosecute alleged human rights violations and war crimes in Sudan [government website]. The proposal was directed to the European Union [official website], whose members have traditionally favored sending the Sudan situation to the International Criminal Court [official website]. Nigeria offered the creation of an "African Panel for Criminal Justice and Reconciliation" as a middle ground between the pro-ICC members of the UN Security Council [official website], and the several permanent members, including the US and Russia, who oppose its use. Nigeria said that the ICC lacked the necessary political sensitivity to deal with issues that were more than just legal decisions, stating that the African Panel for Criminal Justice and Reconciliation would provide "healing and reconciliation" for the people involved. The proposal comes as the Security Council is struggling to work out the details [JURIST report] of a US draft resolution on a proposed 10,000 strong peacekeeping force to be sent to Sudan to enforce the peace agreement between the now-autonomous south and the central government in Khartoum, as well as hopefully addressing the continuing violence in the Darfur region. JURIST's Paper Chase has continuing coverage of Sudan [JURIST Country news archive]. The Sudan Tribune has local coverage.

In other international legal news …

  • South Korea's Chairman of National Security Chung Dong-young [official profile from previous position] said Thursday that diplomatic ties between South Korea [government website] and Japan [government website] had been "seriously hurt" by the continuing dispute between the two nations concerning the ownership of the Dokdo (in Korean)/Takashima (in Japanese) islets. Tensions spiked Wednesday, following the announcement of approval for a "Takeshima Day" [JURIST report] by the Shimane prefecture assembly. Chung announced that in addition to the travel restrictions to the islets being lifted Wednesday, South Korea would be taking steps to increase its presence on the Dakdos. South Korea currently maintains a police detachment on the islets. View South Korea's website on the Dokdo issue [official website]. View a pro-Japanese site on the Takeshima islets [advocacy website]. Read the full text of the Korean National Security Council statement [official text].
  • Lebanon's Chief of Security offered to stand trial Thursday in order to clear his name of any possible connection to the recent assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri. Jamil al-Sayyed, head of the General Security Directorate [official website] in Lebanon [government website], rejected calls for security personnel resignations by opposition members who asserted that the Lebanese security personnel were somehow involved. Sayyed stated that he would be initiating charges against all senior security personnel for shortcomings, negligence, complicity, cover-up or involvement in al-Hariri's assassination, claiming that no one in the security forces had anything to hide in connection to the former PM's death. Reuters has more.