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Regular version of the site
Bachelor 2019/2020

Public International Law

Type: Compulsory course (Private Law)
Area of studies: Law
When: 2 year, 3, 4 module
Mode of studies: offline
Language: English
ECTS credits: 6

Course Syllabus

Abstract

The course on Public International Law examines the nature, principles, and instruments of Public International Law studying in depth the structure and mechanisms of the international legal system, analyzing and discussing the main issues that currently challenge the international community. This course is primarily aimed at providing the students the necessary tools to understand and study the nature, sources and role of Public International Law as well as to analyze and discuss the resolution of international disputes. During the first part, the course will cover a wide array of introductory and substantial topics such as the sources and subjects of PIL, states sovereignty and jurisdiction, the UN legal system and the interrelations between domestic and Public International law. In the second part we’ll dwell upon specific branches of PIL, such as International Human Rights Law, International Humanitarian Law, International Criminal Law, Law of International Security, International Economic Law, International Maritime Law, and International Environmental Law. Moreover, the course will deal with current and emerging issues of PIL, such as terrorism, migration, cyberoperations, unilateral “sanctions”, etc. The course will analyze and discuss treaties, decisions of the UN bodies and other international legal instruments. A special emphasis will be made on the relevant case-law: decisions of international and national courts. During the course on Public International law students are supposed to participate in a Moot Court simulating a case before one of the international courts. There is a written examination (three open questions and one case-study) at the end of the course.
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • The main purpose of the course is to develop skills to use norms of Public International Law, conduct legal research individually and in a team and solve cases in the field of this discipline.
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • The students should gain the following knowledge and understanding: ─ on PIL terminology and academic legal writing; ─ of the sources of international law and learn how to identify the applicable law to solve possible case law (weekly classes, exams, written assignments);
  • The students should gain the following knowledge and understanding: ─ the law of treaties and the role of states and international organizations in law-making; ─ how international law, human rights law and the other specific branches developed historically and their current trends.
  • The students should gain the following skills and abilities: ─ to learn and use specific terminology and sources of PIL; ─ to develop practical abilities of legal research and analysis of customary law, treaties, soft law, decisions, and doctrines; ─ to use appropriate referencing and bibliographic methods;
  • The students should gain the following skills and abilities: to use appropriate referencing and bibliographic methods; ─ to read and correctly analyze case law (International Court of Justice, ICC, ICTY; ICTR, ECtHR, EUCJ, and international arbitration court) using lawyering skills and legal argumentation);
  • Students should gain the following competencies and abilities: ─ to develop a professional methodology to work, learning to conduct exhaustive legal research, correct identification of relevant judicial decision and applicable law, which will be necessary for the fulfillment of their future scientific and professional tasks; ─ to apply a systematic legal approach and using comparative methods;
  • Students should gain the following competencies and abilities: to carry out professional activities in the field of Public International Law, Human Rights Law and/or Humanitarian Assistance; ─ to identify legal issues in the field of PIL and to develop an independent analysis of such issues; ─ to use national and international regulatory acts and judicial decision, for protecting human and civil rights and freedoms, and legitimate interests of legal entities;
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • Introduction to Public International Law (PIL)
    1. The basic principles of the international legal system. 2. Definition of Public International Law. 3. Is Public International Law a “law”? Is International law “international”? 4. Specific features of Public International Law. 5. Difference between Private and Public International Law. 6. PIL and European Law (EU Law). 7. PIL and domestic Law. 8. The different branches of PIL: special and “self-contained regimes”. 9. The historical background of PIL. 3 10. Natural Law and Legal Positivism. 11. The Second World War and the new concept of PIL. 12. Expansion and fragmentation of PIL. 13. The contribution of Russian and Soviet scientists to the science of PIL. 14. Emerging issues and new challenges to PIL.
  • Sources of Public International law
    1. The distinction between “source” and “norm”. 2. Differences between formal and material sources. 3. Definition and classification of the norms. 4. Hierarchy of the PIL sources. 5. Article 38 of the Statute of the International Court of Justice (ICJ). 6. Definition and characteristics of “jus cogens”. 7. Definition of customary law. Identification of customary norms. 8. State practice and “opinio juris”. 9. Regional, local and bilateral customs. 10.Treaties: definition and categories. 11.Soft Law. 12.Judicial decisions. 13.Doctrine. 14.Acts of International Organizations (IOs). 15.Codification of norms of PIL: the UN International Law Commission
  • States as Subjects of International law
    1. State as a subject of PIL: definition and a test for statehood. 2. Recognition of States. 3. Duties and powers of States. 4. State jurisdiction and Sovereign Immunities. 5. Principle of self-determination: internal and external dimensions. 6. Minority rights. 7. Succession and annexations. 8. National Liberation Movements (NLM). 9. De facto states and non-recognized States. 10. Puppet and failed States. 11. The principle of domestic jurisdiction. 12. Legislative, executive and judicial Jurisdiction. 13. Territorial, Nationality, Passive Personality, Universality Principles of Jurisdiction. 14. Extraterritorial Jurisdiction. 15. Extraterritorial Jurisdiction and Human Rights Treaties. 16. Immunities: definitions, types and functions. 17. Sovereign Immunity of states and immunity of state officials. 18. Absolute v. restrictive immunity. 19. Acta jure gestiones and jure imperii. 20. State immunity and the violations of human rights. 21. Bodies of the State covered by immunities. 22. Territorial sovereignty. 23. State border. 24. Settlement of border disputes. 25. Acquisition and loss of State territory. 26. Effective control. 4 27. Territorial integrity, self-determination. 28. Principle of uti possidetis.
  • The Law of Treaties
    1. International treaty: a definition and types. 2. Sources of the Law of Treaties and a history of its codification. 3. Conclusion of international treaties: the main stages and the power to conclude treaties. 4. Methods of expressing consent to a treaty. 5. Reservations: a concept, types and conditions of validity. 6. Effect of treaties in time, space and territory. Parties to the treaty. The effect of a treaty on third states. 7. Modification and termination of treaties. 8. The principle of “pacta sunt servanda”. International treaties and domestic law. 9. Interpretation of treaties: a concept, types, methods, and principles. 10. Conditions of validity and invalidity of treaties. The consequences of invalidity. 11. Termination and suspension of an international treaty. 12. The impact of war on international treaties. 13. Ensuring compliance with international treaties.
  • Public International Law and Municipal Law
    1. Monistic and dualistic approaches. 2. The interplay between the Public International Law and Domestic Law. 3. Domestic implementation of Public International Law. 4. International customary norms in domestic legal system. 5. International treaties in domestic legal system. 6. Automatic incorporation v. statuary implementation. 7. Self-executing and non-self-executing norms of Public International Law. 8. Domestic law before International courts and tribunals.
  • International Organizations
    1. Concept and classification of international organizations (IOs). 2. Nature of the IOs legal personality. 3. Creation and termination of IOs. 4. Membership in IOs: entry and exit procedures, exclusion from membership, and suspension of membership. 5. Functions and competence of an international organization. 6. Structure of the international organization/Immunities of IOs and its officers. 7. UN: history, objectives and basic principles of activity, main bodies and their competence, membership. 8. UN specialized agencies. 9. Council of Europe: history, main bodies, areas of activity. 10. OSCE: history, main bodies, areas of activity, peacekeeping operations. 11. CIS: history, main bodies, directions, major issues. 12. European Union: history, structure, competence. Sources of European Union law/African Union: history, main bodies, activities. 13. OAS: history of establishment, main bodies, activities. 14. Eurasian Economic Union: history of establishment, main bodies, activities. 15. NATO: history, main bodies, areas of activity. 16. The legal status of an international organization and its employees. 17. Legal status of permanent missions, observer missions of States to international organizations and their staff. 18. International conferences: concept, preparation and convening, rules of procedure and decision-making, types of acts of international conferences and their legal significance.
  • Coercion and Responsibility in International Law
    1. Nature of international responsibility. 2. Coercion and its legal qualification under Public International law. 3. Sources of the Law of International responsibility and their historical evolution. 4. The elements of an internationally wrongful act. 5. Attribution of conduct to State. 6. Circumstances precluding wrongfulness. 7. Invoking State responsibility. 8. The consequences of internationally wrongful acts. 9. Cessation. 10. Reparation. 11. Serious breaches of peremptory norms (jus cogens). 12. Diplomatic protection and nationality of claims. 13. The responsibility of IOs for internationally wrongful acts.
  • International Protection of Human Rights
    1. Definition of International Human Rights Law. 2. Human rights in the history of political-legal thought. 3. Historical background. 4. First, second and third generations of human rights. 5. Universality of human rights v. «cultural relativism». 6. Nature and structure of human rights. 7. Positive and negative obligations under International Human Rights Law. 8. Absolute rights. 9. Derogation from obligations on human rights protection. 10. Restriction of human rights and its limits. 11. «International Bill of Human Rights». 12. Structure of international treaties on human rights. 13. Reservations regime to human rights treaties. 14. The relationship between International Human Rights Law and Domestic Law. 15. The relationship between International Human Rights Law and International Humanitarian Law. 16. Responsibility for human rights violations. 17. “Responsibility to protect” (R2P). 18. International Human Rights Bodies. 19. Protection of human rights by main UN bodies: the General Assembly, the Security Council, the ECOSOC, and the ICJ. 20. The UN Human Rights Council: history of creation, members, competence. Universal periodic review. Special procedures. The Advisory Committee. Expert Mechanism on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Forum on Minority Issues. Social Forum. Complaints procedure. 21. UN treaty-based bodies on human rights: history of creation, members, and competence. 22. UN High Commissioner on Human Rights. 23. Regional protection of Human Rights: The Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (European Convention of Human Rights) and the European Court of Human Rights: composition and structure, competence, procedure, criteria for admissibility of individual complaints, types and legal force of decisions. The decisions of the ECHR.
  • Diplomatic and Consular Law
    1. Diplomatic immunity: sources, privileges, property, personal. 2. Diplomatic representation: opening, composition, functions, and termination of activities, privileges, and immunities. 3. Personnel of a diplomatic mission: the concept, composition, beginning, and termination of functions, immunities, and privileges. 4. Permanent missions of States with international organizations. 5. Special missions, state representations at international organizations, headquarters, and international organizations. 6. Consular immunity and privileges: concept and source. 7. Consular headquarter, archives and properties.
  • Prohibition of the threat and use of force in International Law. International Security Law
    1. The historical evolution of the principle of prohibition of use of force. 2. Scope of the prohibition and its legal nature. 3. The collective security system of the UN. 4. The terms “use of force “and “threat of use of force”. 5. The horizontal exception to the prohibition: the right to individual and collective selfdefense. 6. The essential requirements of the self-defense. 7. The concept of “preventive self-defense” and preemptive self-defense. 8. The notion of “aggression” in Public International Law. 9. The vertical exceptions to the prohibition: the UN charter framework and practice. 10. Non-coercive measures. 11. Coercive measures. 12. UN Security Council authorization. 13. “Humanitarian intervention” and “responsibility to protect”: concept, definition, sources and applicable law. 14. Collective security within the framework of regional defensive international organizations. 15. Disarmament: the legal framework. 16. The issue of nuclear disarmament. The reduction and elimination of strategic offensive arms. 17. The problem of the prohibition and destruction of nuclear weapons. International legal regulation of nuclear-weapon tests. The non-proliferation of nuclear weapons. 18. Prohibition and elimination of weapons of mass destruction.
  • International Humanitarian Law
    1. Historical background of the International Humanitarian Law. 2. The law of armed conflict and the Geneva Law. 3. International Humanitarian Law: sources. 4. International armed conflicts and non-international armed conflicts. 5. Waging war. 6. The principles of IHL: distinction, proportionality, humanity, necessity. 7. Combatants, civilians, levee en mass. 8. The status of volunteers, partisans, parliamentarians, military intelligence officers, spies, and mercenaries. 9. Prohibited means and methods of warfare. The concept of a “military object.” The principle of proportionality and precautionary measures. 10. Neutrality in war: the concept and types of neutrality, the rights, and obligations of neutral and belligerent States in relation to each other. Neutrality and non-belligerent States. Military smuggling, prizes, trophies. 11. International legal protection of victims of war. 12. The regime of military captivity. Internment. 13. The regime of military occupation. 14. Protection of civilians and civilian objects. 15. Protection of cultural property during armed conflicts. 16. Ways of ending the war and its international legal consequences. 17. Emerging problems: terrorism, cyberwar and autonomous weapons. 18. The ratio of International Humanitarian Law and International Human Rights Law
  • The Settlement of International Disputes
    1. The notion of international dispute. 2. Negotiation, good offices, and mediation: definition and main features. 3. Inquiry: definition and main features. 4. Conciliation commissions: a definition and main features. 5. International arbitration: historical background, definition and procedure. 6. The Permanent Court of Arbitration. 7. UN International Court of Justice: composition, competence, jurisdiction, procedure, types of decisions and legal force. 8. International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea.
  • International Criminal Law
    1. International Criminal Law: definition and functions. 2. Historical background of the International Criminal Law. 3. The Nuremberg and Tokyo processes. 4. International crimes: concept and general features. 5. War Crimes, Crimes against Humanity, Genocide, Aggression. 6. The International criminal court: history, structure, competence, admissibility of cases and situations, principles of operation, pre-trial proceedings and judicial proceedings, appeal and review of decisions, cooperation with States, enforcement of sentences. 7. The ICTY, the ICTR and the Special Tribunals: history and procedure, structure, competence, enforcement of sentences. 8. Extradition: extraditable offenses, legal grounds, and conditions for extradition. 9. International criminal police organization (Interpol): goals, objectives, activities. 10. Universal jurisdiction. 11. Piracy: the oldest crime and the new methods of its fighting. 12. Combating terrorism. 13. Fighting trafficking of drug and psychotropic substances. 14. Combating human trafficking and slavery in modern times.
  • International Economic Law
    1. Definition of International Economic Law. 2. Historical background of International Economic Law. 3. Sources of International Economic Law. 4. International actors and international financial institutions. 5. Basic principles of International Economic Law: most favored nation treatment, preferential, reciprocity, non-discrimination. 6. The World Bank Group: historical background, structure, functions of its institutions, their competence and decision-making. 7. WTO: historical background, the institutional setting, the normative principles and standards. 8. WTO: dispute settlement mechanisms. 9. International Investment Law: background and sources. 10. Definition of an “investment” and an “investor”. 11. Standards of treatment of foreign investments. 12. Settlement of investment disputes. 13. International investment protection and public concerns.
  • International Maritime Law
    1. Definition, sources and codification of the International Law of the Sea. 2. The UNCLOS. 3. International Maritime Law: a historical overview. 4. Legal status of the territorial sea: definition, internal waters, methods for determining the baselines, delimitation of territorial sea between States with opposite or adjacent coasts, jurisdiction. 5. The right of innocent passage. 6. Rules applicable to warships and other government ships operated for non-commercial purposes. 7. A transit passage. 8. The High seas: a definition, legal status, jurisdiction and rights of the coastal State/s. 9. The legal regime of the vessel on the high seas. 10. The contiguous zone: definition, legal status, jurisdiction, rights of the coastal States. 11. The exclusive economic zone: definition and legal regime, rights, and jurisdiction of the coastal state, the rights of other States. 12. The continental shelf: definition and rights of the coastal State. 13. Submarine cables and pipelines. 14. The international seabed area: concept and legal status. 15. Archipelago waters: the concept, legal regime, conditions for the implementation of the archipelago passage. 16. An international channel. The international legal regime of the Suez, Panama and Kiel canals. 17. Conservation and management of marine natural resources. 18. A marine scientific research international cooperation. 19. The Tribunal for the Law of the Sea.
  • International Environmental Law
    1. International Environmental Law: historical background and basic principles. 2. The scope of International Environmental Law. 3. The role of international organizations in the development of International Environmental Law. 4. The United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. 5. Cooperation of States in the conservation and sustainable use of natural resources. 6. Trans-boundary water resources. 7. International legal protection of the marine environment. 8. Legal regime of the outer space. 9. Climate change and the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking exam
    Международное публичное право (ЮЧП, 2 курс): Examination will be carried out in a written form. The task (three open questions and a case-study) will be sent to students on June, 11 at 10 am. Duration of the examination is 2 hours. Papers should be sent to vrusinova@hse.ru by 12 am. For participation in the examination students should prepare their computers and have an access to Internet. During examination students should write their papers individually, any contacts with third persons are prohibited. A paper with elements of plagiarism will be evaluated with «0». During the examination it is allowed to use legal sources, academic literature, presentations and other relevant materials. Re-examination is carried out in the same form.
  • non-blocking colloquium (Moot court)
  • non-blocking home-task
  • non-blocking online-сlasses
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • Interim assessment (4 module)
    0.2 * colloquium (Moot court) + 0.4 * exam + 0.1 * home-task + 0.3 * online-сlasses
Bibliography

Bibliography

Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Bjorge, E. (2018). Public Law Sources and Analogies of Public International Law. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.22C05D7F

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • Davi’, A. (2018). The Role of General Principles in EU Private International Law and the Perspectives of a Codification in the Field. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.9AFF51E6
  • Максуров А.А. - Coordination in legal systems of the countries of Europe. Part I. Монография - Русайнс - 2018 - 223с. - ISBN: 978-5-4365-2560-0 - Текст электронный // ЭБС BOOKRU - URL: https://book.ru/book/930030