Developments in PIL Journals Scholarship

Revista Electrónica de Estudios Internacionales, June 2021

The Revista Electrónica de Estudios Internacionales (REEI), whose current editor-in-chief is Prof. de Miguel Asensio, a founding member of the EAPIL, is an open-access journal published by the Spanish Association of International Law and International Relations Professors (AEPDIRI). The journal exists since 2000; it is open to specialized research works on public international law, private international law and international relations. Those willing to submit a paper are invited to comply with the instructions available here.

The latest issue is number 41, of June 2021. The following contents are of direct interest for PIL:

José Ignacio Paredes Pérez, Contratos de suministro de contenidos y servicios digitales B2C: problemas de calificación y tribunales competentes (B2C contracts for the supply of digital content and digital services: problems of characterization and competent courts)

The purpose of this study is to analyse the characterization problems posed, for the purposes of the application of the European rules on international jurisdiction, by the legal actions available to the consumer in the new European regulation on improving consumer access to digital goods and services, and the possible fragmentation of litigation relating to the same infringing conduct under Directive (EU) 2019/770 and Regulation (EU) 2016/679. In the context of the Brussels I bis Regulation, the autonomous characterization of the legal actions available under the new regulation, and the way in which this is done, is decisive, depending on whether or not the contract falls within the scope of articles 17 to 19.

María del Carmen Chéliz Inglés, La Convención de Singapur y los acuerdos de mediación comercial internacional (The Singapore Convention and the international commercial mediation agreements)

The Singapore Convention on International Settlement Agreements resulting from mediation represents a milestone in the determined promotion of this dispute resolution mechanism and puts an end to the absence of a harmonized legal framework to regulate this issue. The most significant advance is that it gives a new legal status to the agreements resulting from international commercial mediation, which become directly enforceable in all the States that ratify the Convention. In this context, the objective of this work is to analyze the key issues of the Singapore Convention, highlighting its lights and shadows, and assess what repercussions the adherence to said normative instrument would have on the Spanish legal system.

Georgina Garriga Suau, Blockchain-based smart contracts and conflict rules for business-to-business operations (Blockchain-based smart contracts y normas de conflicto para operaciones entre profesionales)

In recent years, the irruption of blockchain technology has enhanced the impact of smart contracts in the international trade scenario, although not without raising some problems, particularly, in terms of Private International Law. This paper, thus, addresses such problems when it comes to determining the applicable law from a business-to-business perspective leaving aside the particular problems raised by the conflict-of-law rules oriented to protect the weaker party to a contract. The analysis, however, starts with a general approach to the two concepts which are the object of this paper: smart contracts and blockchain technology.

As usual, the journal contains as well a section commenting on selected relevant decisions on PIL delivered in the six months prior to its publication. Reviews on recent monographs or collective books follow.

The remaining contributions in this issue relate to public international law or international relations. Those (like me) with a specific interest in procedural law will surely find worth reading these two:

Laura Aragonés Molina, Unidad o fragmentación en el Derecho internacional procesal: la revisión de sentencias ante la Corte Internacional de Justicia y el Tribunal Europeo de Derechos Humanos (Unity or fragmentation in international procedural law: revision of judgments at the International Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights)

The increasing specialization of Public International Law and the diversity of international courts and tribunals with specific competences ratione materiae and personae in the multiple international normative sectors are still generating challenges for coherence, consistency and predictability of international jurisprudence. Procedural rules and principles may have a cohesive effect on judicial practice and foster a judicial dialogue and cross-fertilization at a procedural level. It may contribute to the unity of the international legal order through the formation of common rules of procedure. In this paper we explore this cohesive effect exhaustively, studying the interaction between the International Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights when they interpret and apply the revision provision.

Montserrat Abad Castelos, Rendición de cuentas por los crímenes cometidos durante el califato del Daesh: las pruebas como clave (Accountability for crimes committed during the ISIS caliphate: evidence as key)

This article seeks to determine if evidence can be a way to overcome the existing difficulties in the field of justice to hold Daesh members accountable for the atrocity crimes committed in Syria and Iraq during the armed conflicts that took place there. To get this, recent innovations are examined both the actors that collect and preserve evidence and the nature, characteristics and challenges that evidences pose. It will be concluded that the developments that are taking place are crucial and, consequently, have the capacity to trigger a paradigm shift that might be reflected in the outcome of pending prosecutions, in order to ensure the responsibility of the perpetrators of the crimes. Nevertheless, at the same time, it also shows how evidence is not the only key to take into account, since the problems related to the exercise of jurisdiction in domestic orders, which go far beyond the legal plane, will also be transcendental.

Legal Secretary CJEU Full Professor PIL, University of La Laguna (Spain) Senior research fellow MPI Luxembourg (on leave)

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