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Library blog

These blogs are written by the librarians of the Peace Palace Library. All blogs are dealing with subjects on International Law. Every blog contains links and references to the collection of the Peace Palace Library.

  • Universe of Nonsense

    January 19, 2017

    In today’s malleable world of Big Data, wherein modern people use Google to know more but understand less, we risk forgetting how knowledge is created and how we can verify a fact. The internet would give us a more democratic and open media environment, but the opposite is true: we live in closed communities online, echo well show us what’s right, bubbles created algorithms which make us encounter only the news that confirms our worldview.This electronic world could lead to a feasible reality based on emotions, opinions, prejudices and places the truth based on objective facts more and more in the shade. All the battles for human rights and the call to freedom and justice will turn out meaningless.

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  • Evolving Law Libraries

    January 13, 2017

    At the turn of the century the role of Law Libraries and legal librarians had not changed fundamentally since their inception. Facing formidable challenges ever since, mostly by technology, their role has changed considerably. Law Libraries can be seen as the provider and gatekeepers of legal information. Correspondingly, a Law Library is also dependent on the institution that it is embedded within. In that sense, there is a mutually beneficial relationship. There are many different types of Law Libraries, think of Law Libraries servicing government institutions like courts and legislatures, or Law Libraries in the private sector assisting law firms and academic Law Libraries that aid students and scholars.

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  • European Union in 2017

    January 5, 2017

    2016 has been a turbulent year for the European Union and its member states. Brexit, the armed conflict in Syria and Iraq, the refugee crisis, terrorism and the Italian referendum; all topics covered by the Peace Palace Library in several Library Specials and Library blogs.

    2017 promises to be a defining moment for the continuation of the ever closing Union. This blog touches upon a couple of developments which can lead to discussion within the European Union and its members.

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  • Peace Palace Library 2016 in Review

    December 29, 2016

    As we turn the page on 2016, a lot has happened in the world and also specific on the international law arena. In this blog the Peace Palace Library looks back on the most notable international law news and Peace Palace Library events. The Paris Agreement on Climate Change has been ratified, withdrawal of South-Africa, Burundi and Gambia from the International Criminal Court (ICC), the ICC Trial Chamber VIII sentence of Mr Al Mahdi to be guilty of the war crime of attacking historic and religious buildings in Timbuktu, the South China Sea Arbitration Award and International Court of Justice 70th Anniversary! On behalf of the Peace Palace Staff, I like to thank our members, users and readers. We wish you a very happy new year and if you like, we will keep you updated! Stay tuned!

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  • Aleppo, Ankara and Berlin: Atrocities, Violence and Terror

    December 21, 2016

    Humanitarian Crisis in Syria. In the eastern part of Aleppo, a Syrian city held by rebels, thousands of civilians were trapped. People were being executed in those parts of Aleppo that had been retaken by Assad forces. Recently the trapped residents that were stuck in a small area with no safe zones posted final “goodbye” messages, pictures and tweets on social media. They have thanked supporters, and questioned how the world allowed the situation in Aleppo to happen. The situation in Syria has been described as a “stain on the world’s collective conscience”.

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  • The Harmonization of European Family Law: Work in Progress

    December 16, 2016

    With the aim of offering citizens in the European Union legal certainty in cross border family law situations the EU has increasingly come to define key aspects of jurisdiction, applicable law and recognition and enforcement of judgments on divorce, maintenance, and disputes over children, including international child abduction, and provided new frameworks for cross-national cooperation. This blog gives an overview of the main EU regulations in the field of international family law.

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  • Interview Sigrid Kaag

    December 9, 2016

    This month, we have the honor of interviewing Ms. Sigrid Kaag, a top Dutch diplomat who currently serves as a United Nations Special Coordinator for Lebanon (UNSCOL). Last month, the Dutch Carnegie Foundation awarded Sigrid Kaag the Carnegie Wateler Peace Prize. Before the ceremony took place, we took the opportunity to interview Ms. Kaag to discuss her work at the UN, in particular, the succesful UN-OPCW joint mission Ms. Kaag led to eliminate the chemical weapons programme in Syria. We also discussed the role of international law in her daily work at the UN. Here’s what she had to say.

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  • Java Sea: Dutch, British and U.S. WW II Shipwrecks destroyed by Illegal Scavenging

    December 2, 2016

    An international investigation has been launched into the mysterious disappearance of Dutch Second World War shipwrecks which have vanished from the bottom of the Java Sea off the coast of Indonesia. In a press statement on 15 November, the Dutch Defence Ministery has confirmed that the wrecks of two of its warships that sank in 1942, the HNLMS De Ruyter (see photo) and HNLMS Java, have completely gone, while large parts of a third, the HNLMS Kortenaer, are also missing. The Dutch Defence Ministry immediateley launched an investigation as to what happened to the wrecks, suggesting the wrecks may have been illegally salvaged for the scrap metal market.

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  • Defending Europe with an Army?

    November 24, 2016

    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.

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  • ‘The World Forgetting, by the World Forgot’

    November 17, 2016

    At present there are many complex legal cases on cultural heritage waiting to be settled. These cases are a judicial challenge for all stakeholders. What makes it even more of a challenge is that most don’t realise the fact that cultural heritage is a component of a human rights issue. Cultural heritage could be described as a record of the genius of human beings. The legacy of artefacts, antiquities, traditions and living expressions could be seen as unintelligible foot print left behind for the next generations to mark our path through this world. It’s unimaginable to separate a people’s cultural heritage from the people itself and their rights.

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