President Trump Refuses To Certify Iran Nuclear Deal: Signatories Prepare For Renegotiation Of Terms

By Brittany Dierken

Barack Obama’s single most important foreign policy achievement is now being ripped apart by President Donald Trump.

President Trump threatens to pull the U.S. out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (referred to as the Iran nuclear deal) by stating that this nuclear deal is “one of the worst and most one-sided transactions the U.S. has ever entered into.” In a speech on Friday, President Trump accused Iran for violating the terms of the deal by sponsoring terrorism and proposed new sanctions. Read more ›

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TfL Drives Uber Out of London

By Gerald Bannon

In 2012, just before the Olympics arrived in London, England, Uber received a private-hire license to run its ride-hailing operation in and around the city. In the five years since, to say that Uber has faced its fair share of controversy would be an understatement. From strict regulations telling drivers where they can and cannot pick up passengers to disputes with black-cab drivers claiming that Uber is hurting their business, the company has spent the better part of its time in London proving to regulators why its license should not be revoked. Unfortunately, just days ago Uber lost this battle as Transport for London (TfL, the main regulator of transportation within the city) voted not to renew Uber’s private-hire license that expired on September 30th. Read more ›

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The Rohingya and International Laws of Ethnic Cleansing

By Zachary Perdek

The Rohignya have been described as “the world’s most persecuted minority.” They are an ethic group of about 1.1 million who have lived in Myanmar for centuries. They speak a distinct dialect, are majority Muslim, are not considered citizens, and are not recognized as one of the 135 official ethnic groups of Myanmar. On September 11, 2017 the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights said that the current situation of the Rohingya in Myanmar, “seems a textbook example of ethnic cleansing,” and the actions of the Myanma government are “without regard for the basic principles of international law.” So, how did we get here, what textbook is the commissioner using, and what international laws are he referring to? Read more ›

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Russian Response: a Tit for Tat

By Sean Assad

In response to the prospect of increased economic sanctions from the US, Russia has ordered the US to cut their diplomatic staff by 755. In addition, Russia has said that it will block access to two American diplomatic properties: a warehouse in Moscow and a bucolic picnic ground along the Moscow River. If this sounds somewhat familiar, it is as the US had seized two of Russia’s diplomatic properties in the US last year and 35 Russian diplomats to leave the US. Although, a big difference is that the properties the US seized were used for intelligence gathering, while the properties Russia is threatening to seize are merely recreational. The latest moves in response to the sanctions allows for a discussion to be had on the concept of state sovereignty, diplomatic immunity, and the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations of 1961. Read more ›

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Another Country joins the fray in the South China Sea

By Sean Assad

The South China Sea is an important and strategic area as well as one of the most tense areas of the world. It sees $5 trillion in shipborne trade every year, and also has major fishing and energy resources. China claims most of this territory despite parts of the the sea being claimed by Brunei, Malaysia, the Philippines, Taiwan and Vietnam, which has led to intense territorial disputes. These disputes garnered intense international attention in 2016 when the a decision was made in the Philippines’ 2013 case against China by the Hague-based Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA). China had claimed historic rights to the territory but they were only valid if they accorded with the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS), an international agreement of which China is a party. The PCA found that there was “no legal basis for China to claim historic rights to resources within the sea areas falling within the nine dash line” because the UNCLOS takes precedence over historic rights. China had refused to recognize the ruling at that time and they continue to operate in the South China Sea.

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