Biopiracy, largely defined as misappropriation and intellectual property control of biological resources and associated traditional knowledge, has long had profound adverse impacts on the lives of the people and communities in developing countries, including Southeast Asia, one of the global biodiversity hotspots. Given that patents are the main means used in most biopiracy cases to exploit resources and knowledge, this article will discuss its feasibility as the other policy instrument to tackle biopiracy in Southeast Asia and suggest how it should be established and/or improved. For this purpose, this article examines two policy instruments in the patent regime that can be and have been used to address the aforementioned problem: compulsory licensing and the disclosure requirement. Based on the analysis of these two instruments, this article discusses why compulsory licensing is an unlikely means of tackling the problem and suggests how a disclosure requirement can be established or improved to tackle biopiracy in the region.
Forty years have passed since the UNCLOS was adopted and it is necessary to reexamine its successes and failures. This article will set out to check the four legislative features of the UNCLOS and then make some suggestions. From the aspect of legislative technique, the UNCLOS is extensive with an ambitious framework but is vague in details. From the aspect of a principled position, meanwhile, its provisions are mainly beneficial to countries with long and unimpeded sea lines but not to landlocked countries, short coastlines, or an impeded outward extension. From the aspect of rights and interest division, the division of maritime rights and interests of countries in the UNCLOS is not operational in practice. From the aspect of dispute resolution, it has constructed an ambitious mechanism accommodating various international judicial institutions, which is, however, too complicated, lacks focus, and has loopholes. The international community should consider revising and improving the Convention in view of certain shortcomings and deficiencies in its legislative features
This paper analyzes the need to strengthen the law applicable to Flag of Convenience (FoC) States and vessels with the goal of sustaining fish stocks and combatting overfishing on the high seas. FoC States and vessels can escape law enforcement conducted by the other flag states. Due to the lack of political will of FoC States to enforce the law and obligations imposed on FoC vessels to conduct conservation on the high seas, FoC vessels instead contribute significantly to the deterioration of fish stocks on the high seas. FoC vessels overexploit these resources and engage in illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing, which harms the fish stocks on the high seas. The results of the study indicate that there are some legal lacunas in international legal obligations for FoC States and vessels to conserve the fish stocks on the high seas. Existing international legal instruments are ineffective in combating over-exploitation of fish stocks on the high seas by FoC vessels. Hence, strengthen the laws applicable to the FoC States and FoC vessels is urgently needed.
This research attempts to identify the issues which make it more difficult to safeguard transboundary protected areas in the ASEAN countries. The research has found that national forest law, which relates only to the territory of each country, is not sufficient to safeguard the transboundary protected areas that spread across the boundaries of two or more countries. There is no national law, regional convention, or bilateral agreement among the ASEAN countries which directly provides for the conservation of transboundary protected areas. This author has adopted a legal approach to the protection of transboundary protected areas in Europe and has proposed that a regional convention or agreement should be used as an instrument to promote cooperation and sustainable management for the conservation of transboundary protected areas and to deal with problems that do not stop at national borders. The relevant domestic laws should be consistent with such a prospective regional convention or agreement.
Southeast Asia is home to the Straits of Malacca and Singapore, one of the world’s most important sea lines of communication. The closure of the straits to international navigation may adversely affect the well-being of the global economy. On February 11, 2022, the Biden administration announced the new Indo-Pacific strategy, which will continue to deliver on AUKUS. For centuries, the proposed Thai Canal Project has been planned to revolutionize the shipping industry by bypassing the busy waters of the Straits of Malacca and Singapore. If the canal is built under the US Indo-Pacific Strategy, the pre-eminence of the Straits of Malacca and Singapore will not last long. This article analyzes the potential increase of navigation of nuclear-powered submarines through the Straits of Malacca and Singapore and its ensuing environmental implications from a viewpoint of international law. It discusses effects of the proposed canal plan in influencing the shipping industry should this “dream waterway” be constructed.
Since the beginning of the seventh century, Islamic law has played an essential role in protecting the personal, economic, judicial, and political rights of civilians during armed conflict. Fourteen centuries before the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was drafted in 1948, it had already initiated a human revolution consisting of a set of human principles. In addition, Islamic law has made a significant contribution to international humanitarian law (IHL). This paper focuses on two specific legal constructs in warfare: the definition of the combatant and the principle of distinction. This article comparatively examines how these two laws deal with different aspects of war that fall under jus ad bellum, jus in bello, and jus post bellum. A comparative analysis of the various elements and aspects of just war theory in Islamic and contemporary international law provides a much deeper understanding of its limitations. We can safely conclude that there is a unique relationship between the Islamic law of war and IHL.
On January 4, 2020, the official Twitter account of the former US President Trump threatens to target Iran’s cultural heritage sites conditioned on any Iranian retaliation on US military forces then stationed in the Middle East. The immediate context was that the US-led drone strike had killed Iran’s Major General Qasem Soleimani in Iraq (Baghdad) only two days prior. This study critically analyzes whether “Tweets” uploaded to President Trump’s Twitter account could reasonably be construed as a type of harm against international law instruments and framework on the safeguarding of cultural heritage. This paper provides a brief contextual overview of President Trump’s Tweets; traces the historical destruction of cultural property during conflicts and discusses the preservation of heritage; delineates international laws and assesses whether President Trump and the US might be legally bound to refrain from threats to destroy cultural property; and examines the increasing role of social media in the evolution of the idea of diplomacy.
Non-discrimination is a fundamental principle of the World Trade Organization (WTO), which promotes global trade with the goal of eradicating hunger, reducing poverty, and ensuring global prosperity. According to the WTO rules, members are required to give other members most-favoured-nation and national treatment. Due to the military conflict between the Russian Federation and Ukraine, the United States, European Union, and several other member countries suspended most-favoured-nation treatment for Russian goods in mid-March 2022. This study examines the principle of non-discrimination under the WTO provisions, identifies relevant exceptions, analyses the Russia-Traffic in Transit case, and evaluates the appropriateness of the above actions by the US and others. Finally, this paper concludes that the US and its allies failed to present concrete evidence demonstrating a direct and causal relationship between the military situation in Ukraine and their own essential interests under Article XXI of GATT 1994.
There is no doubt that the BRICS countries established in 2000-01, have already made their mark on the international stage. Increasing relations among BRICS countries with less developed nations through south-south cooperation, especially, China, India, and Russia and with least developed countries are of significant importance. BRICS has been the forerunner of cooperation, collaboration and reformation of the present international governance structure and to move towards multilateralism. Over the years, BRICS has become a platform of, and for the developing countries. The ongoing conflict between Russia and Ukraine has created divisions in the world, impacting diplomatic relations that BRICS needs to address. The fact that Russia is the member of BRICS makes things complicated and new challenges has emerged for the bloc to take necessary actions and policy considerations. The article examines the challenges and opportunities for BRICS (as a bloc) amid Russia-Ukraine conflict in a post pandemic world.
This Commentary provides a detailed analysis of the US-DPRK Peace Treaty, a proposed bilateral peace treaty between the United States and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (i.e., North Korea). The US-DPRK Peace Treaty was conceived as the first in a series of legal instruments to be executed in furtherance of the establishment of “peace as a system” on the Korean Peninsula. In this monograph, the authors envision that such a peace treaty would serve as a basis for peaceful co-existence between the two countries and, ultimately, a peaceful, non-volatile situation on the Korean Peninsula. The Commentary offers an in-depth explanation of each provision of the US-DPRK Peace Treaty, including the meaning, background, rationale and legal implications of individual provisions of the Peace Treaty. Additionally, it provides insight into relevant international law issues and the history of negotiations and engagement among interested parties in the context of the inter-Korean conflict.