The ‘Gänseliesel’ (Goose Girlis), a historical fountain erected in 1901, represents the most well-known landmark of the city of Goettingen.

Unpacking Economic and Social Rights: International and Comparative Dimensions - Conference

The Goettingen Journal of International Law is pleased to announce that we will take part in a conference in November 2018. The joint research project of the Institute of International and European Law of the University of Göttingen and the Minerva Center for Human Rights at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Faculty of Law will be holding this conference in Göttingen, Germany under the title “Unpacking Economic and Social Rights: International and Comparative Dimensions”. The conference is a culmination of a joint research project directed by Prof. Tomer Broude and Prof. Andreas L. Paulus and examines economic and social rights from a comparative perspective, looking at German, Israeli and European legal systems and their respective constitutional, legislative and jurisprudential experiences, as well as the universal human rights framework under the auspices of the United Nations. In addition to this call, Prof. Paulus and Prof. Broude, junior researchers of the project and associate and invited scholars will present their research at the conference.

Scholars who work on economic and social rights are invited to submit abstracts. The proceedings of the conference and papers presented will be published in one of our upcoming issues. See the call for papers and the conference website for more details.

Deadline for submission of Abstracts: 1 June 2018. Accepted proposals will be notified by 1 July 2018. Full papers due for submission by 1 November 2018.

For queries and clarifications – please contact

The Responsibility to Protect and the Role of Regional Organizations: an Appraisal of the African Union’s Interventions

Tom Kabau



This article examines the dilemmas and opportunities of the African Union, a regional organization, in implementing the responsibility to protect concepts in respect to forceful intervention to prevent or stop the occurrence of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. Article 4(h) of the Constitutive Act of the African Union specifically mandates the Union to forcefully intervene in a Member State in such circumstances. Although the African Union has successfully resolved some situations where peaceful negotiations or consensual military intervention was sufficient, there has also been failure by the Union where such means fail or are inadequate. Such instances include the Darfur conflict where peacekeeping was insufficient, and recently in Libya where the African Union openly opposed enforcement of no fly zones to protect civilians. This article is of the view that the African Union's failure to implement Article 4(h) of the Constitutive Act, even in deserving situations, may have been aggravated by the failure to institutionalize the concept of responsible sovereignty within the Union's legal framework and processes. Despite the forceful intervention mandate, there are also provisions that affirm the principles of non-interference. The AU system therefore fails to resolve the dilemma between sovereignty and intervention. Sovereignty preservation remains as an effective legal and political justification for non-intervention by the AU. This has promoted a subsequent trend of greater sovereignty concerns by the Union. Institutionalization of the concepts postulated under the emerging norm of responsibility to protect within the AU framework and processes can contribute to the elimination of the legal and political dilemmas of forceful intervention by the Union.


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