Pilot fatigue has long been stated as a concern in the airline industry. The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has previously proposed setting limits on the duration that pilots can fly. Fatigue leads to slower reaction times and impaired concentration and decision making.Read more
18 February 2016, new EASA Flight Time Limitations (FTL) rules (EU Regulation 83/2014) come into effect.
The aviation industry shifts to a fully harmonised European set of rules aimed at preventing air crew fatigue from constituting a risk to flight safety. Aviation accidents are still extremely rare, but when they have occurred, figures show that 80% are a result of human error, with pilot fatigue accounting for 15-20% of human error in fatal accidents.
During the U.S. election campaign Trump threatened to abandon U.S. allies in Europe if they did not spend enough on defense. Apart from undermining the deterrence-effect of NATO, this policy would be disastrous for European security. Fortunately U.S. President Barack Obama has said: “In my conversation with the president-elect he expressed a great interest in maintaining our core strategic relationships and so, one of the messages I will be able to deliver is his commitment to NATO and the transatlantic alliance.” Although president Trump will retain America’s commitment to the NATO alliance, Europe is awake now after dozing in under the U.S. security umbrella.Read more
Territorial disputes in the South China Sea involve both island and maritime claims among several sovereign states within the region, namely Brunei, the People’s Republic of China, Malaysia, the Philippines, and Vietnam. A significant aspect of the territorial dispute in the South China Sea concerns China’s construction of (artificial) islands. The disputes in the South China focus on the question whether the (land reclamations on the) reefs in the South China Sea are islands or rocks or Low Tide Elevations.Read more
Torkel Opsahl Academic EPublisher (TOAEP) in Brussels has published a new (e-)book : Historical War Crimes Trials in Asia edited by Daqun Liu and Binxin Zhang. Also worth mentioning are volume III and Volume IV in the Series: Historical origins of international criminal law, edited by Morten Bergsmo, Cheah Wui Ling and Yi Ping. The ‘Publication […]Read more
In the South China Sea Arbitration Award (12 July 2016), an arbitral tribunal at The Hague found that China’s claim to historic rights to resources was incompatible with the detailed allocation of rights and maritime zones in the Convention. The Tribunal considered that prior to the Convention, the waters of the South China Sea beyond the territorial sea were legally part of the high seas, in which vessels from any State could freely navigate and fish. Accordingly, the Tribunal concluded that, as between the Philippines and China, there was no legal basis for China to claim historic rights to resources, in excess of the rights provided for by the Convention, within the sea areas falling within the ‘nine-dash line’.Read more
In the 1990s, European member states have concluded about 200 bilateral investment treaties (BITs) with Eastern European countries. For example, the Netherlands has BITs with Poland, the Baltic States, Slovakia and Czech Republic. Now most of these Eastern European countries are member states of the European Union themselves, the European Commission wants to put an end to the intra-EU bilateral investment treaties (BITs): agreements concluded between EU member states. If these agreements are terminated, there is a risk that European investors will not be strongly and adequately protected under the provisions currently included in the single market.Read more
The British newspaper The Guardian calls the Brexit-referendum the ‘biggest political decision of the century’. British voters: ‘Should the United Kingdom remain a member of the European Union or leave the European Union?’ On 29 March 2019 — the first date of ‘Brexit’ — the British Parliament (House of Commons) has shown many ‘NO’ ‘s to the Withdrawal Agreement Theresa May had negotiated with the European Union. This library special provides background information about (the) Brexit (process).Read more
Are coral reefs condemned to disappear? During the first decade of the 21st century, the intensification of cyclones, the phenomenon of coral bleaching due to ocean warming, outbreaks of a coral-eating starfish and coral diseases left us with this fear. In terms of addressing knowledge gaps, coral reefs are a priority because of their extraordinarily high biological richness and the multitude of products and ecosystem services they provide to human beings. What is the status and legal regime of coral reefs nowadays?Read more
The Law of the Sea Treaty, formally known as the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, was adopted in 1982. One hundred and sixty-two countries, including China and Russia and the European Union, are signatories to the treaty that governs the world’s oceans. The United States is not. The Convention has been approved by nearly every maritime power and all the permanent members of the UN Security Council, except the United States. Despite being a leading maritime power possessing the largest Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and one of the longest continental shelves, the United States has not ratified UNCLOS.Read more
On November 25, 2015, President Obama signed into law the US Commercial Space Launch Competitiveness Act (H.R. 2262). As far as space mining is concerned, this legislation will give US space firms the rights to own and sell natural resources they mine from bodies in space, including asteroids. But does the new law risk privatizing a realm that is meant to belong to all of humanity? Is there a violation of international law? Is an international space exploitation regime preferable?Read more