On 29 September 2021 the European Union’s General Court annulled Council decisions approving trade and fisheries agreements concluded between the European Union and the Kingdom of Morocco. The judgment is the latest in an ongoing saga in which the EU’s trade agreements with Morocco have been challenged before the EU courts on the grounds that they violate international law. These agriculture and fishing agreements apply to the territory and territorial waters of Western Sahara, a non-self-governing territory occupied by Morocco, without the consent of the people of Western Sahara.
The European Union has become an ever more visible and active player at the international level. Legal scholarship has addressed this phenomenon. The field of EU external relations law discusses the legal issues that arise from the EU’s activity on the international plane. Much of this literature is focused on the internal issues that the European Union and its Member States face. In International Law and the European Union, I sought to explore the issues that arise, not only for the EU legal order, but also for international law and for non-EU states.
International Law and the European Union
To do so, the book integrates the perspectives of European Union law and of international law. In researching the book, I quickly realized that there were diverging views about the very nature of the EU and its legal order. As I discuss in Chapter 1 on ‘The European Union in International Law’ both legal scholarship and practice present an ‘EU law’ view and an ‘international law view’ on the nature of the European Union. The EU law view tends to see the EU as a unique legal order, one that has escaped from its international law origins. It is highly influenced by the narrative, established by the Court of Justice of the EU in van Gend & Loos and later judgments, of the Union as a ‘new legal order’. This internal narrative remains contested in international law scholarship, which tends to view the Union as a type of international organization, albeit one that has developed a number of unique features. The aim of the book is not to argue which of these views is ‘correct’. Rather, it accepts that the EU is a unique type of legal entity, and explores how international law concepts and principles have adjusted and respond to these claims. Rather than provide a unitary theory of the European Union that could address the types of legal clashes and conflicts that arise under EU and international law, it explores the ways that public international law addresses legal subjects other than states.
A webinar series by the International Law and Affairs Group at City, University of London and the SCRAP research group at the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy, SOAS
Elaine Fahey and Isabella Mancini
“Understanding the EU as a Good Global Governance Actor: ambitions, direction and values” is the provisional title of a book project forthcoming with Edward Elgar in 2022 and edited by (Elaine Fahey City Law School) and Isabella Mancini (City Law School/ Brunel Law School).
Andrea Maria Pelliconi
On 16 June, 2021, the City Law School hosted a virtual launch of Dr Tamás Molnár’s new book The Interplay between the EU’s Return Acquis and International Law. The webinar, chaired by Dr Andrew Wolman, was organised by City’s International Law and Affairs Group (ILAG) and the Institute for the Study of European Laws (ISEL), and saw Professor Paul James Cardwell (University of Strathclyde) and Professor Elspeth Guild (Queen Mary University of London) as expert discussants. This post summarises the discussion and provides some reflections on Molnar’s book.
Dr Jonatan Echebarria Fernández (City Law School), Dr Tafsir Matin Johansson (World Maritime University) and Mr Mitchell Lennan (University of Strathclyde)
On Tuesday 8 June 2021, eleven leading experts from academia, the fishing industry, and international organisations gathered at an online workshop to discuss the legal challenges presented by Brexit and fisheries. The workshop was organised as part of the City Law School Higher Education Innovation Fund (HEIF) funded project “Legal challenges faced by coastal and fishing communities and the new British Fisheries Policy”. The project is led by Dr Jonatan Echebarria Fernández of City Law School (Principal Investigator), Dr Tafsir Matin Johansson of World Maritime University (Senior Expert Consultant) and Mr Mitchell Lennan of the University of Strathclyde (Impact Assistant).
Y.Y. Brandon Chen (University of Ottawa), Julia Chung (University of Ottawa) & Hannah Duhme (University of Ottawa)
This post is the third in a series of blog posts on COVID-19 and inequalities from a multidisciplinary and international perspective. A work-in-progress symposium on 9-10 June 2021 on the forthcoming edited collection tentatively titled as above is under contract with Bristol University Press sits within the Bristol Studies in Law and Social Justice Series.
The COVID-19 pandemic in Canada has affected racialized migrant populations disproportionately. Like many high-income countries, Canada depends heavily on migrant workers to perform essential services, including inside health and long-term care facilities, on the farms, and in food-processing plants. While attending to such essential work during the pandemic increases migrant workers’ risk of exposure to COVID-19, government policies have largely fallen short of what is required to mitigate these risks.
Gwilym David Blunt, City, University of London
This post is the second in a series of blog posts on COVID-19 and inequalities from a multidisciplinary and international perspective. A work-in-progress symposium on 9-10 June 2021 on the forthcoming edited collection tentatively titled as above is under contract with Bristol University Press sits within the Bristol Studies in Law and Social Justice Series.
Several hundred people assembled in London’s Hyde Park in July 2020 to protest rules making face masks mandatory in shops and supermarkets to help control the spread of COVID-19. This was not an isolated event. Similar protests have occurred in many places around the world in reaction to the prospect of “mask mandates” – especially in the United States.