Al-Quds Bard College, Al-Quds University, Palestine

Public International Law (Course Portal)

Public International Law and International Organization

Human Rights Program, Al-Quds Bard College, Al-Quds University

Fall Semester 2012 

Lecturer: Valentina Azarov; valentinaazarov@gmail.com

Class times: Tuesdays, 12:30 – 15:20

Office hours: Tuesdays, 9:30 – 12:30 or by appointment

Course Description

What is ‘international law’? Is it really law or a set of guiding norms that purport to regulate international relations? How are international rules enforced in the contemporary state of international politics? This course offers a comprehensive introduction to the law of inter-state relations acquainting students with the legal features of the international community, its subjects, states and non-state actors, including the place of the individual in the international system; the concepts of sovereignty and jurisdiction; the sources of international legal norms; the implementation of international rules by domestic jurisdictions; state and individual responsibility for violations of international law and their consequences; and the enforcement mechanisms of international law through collective sanctions by international institutions and  self-regulation through national laws incorporating international rules. We will consider the current state of the rules on the use of force inter-state relations and the place of judicial and quasi-judicial enforcement mechanisms. The course conducts an examination of the principles, foundations and institutions of international law with a particular focus on the place and role of international human rights, humanitarian and criminal law. The course also examines the limitations and possibilities of the role of international organizations as makers and enforcers of international rules.

Throughout the course, students will be expected to engage with international legal history, critical international legal theory and international relations approaches to the study of international law. As part of its learning objectives, the court looks to provide students with a solid understanding of legal doctrine and theoretical debates in the field; a basic appreciation of the evolution of the discipline; the ability to apply international law to current events, and carry out research on main international legal materials; and familiarity with some of the basic international legal terminology, texts and instruments.

The course is based on 12 (double) sessions leaving a few sessions for guest lectures, further discussion, review and evaluation. The syllabus sets out the topics we will address in each week’s seminar, and sets out the required reading, as well as some further reading that can assist you in conducting research for the written assignments.

The full syllabus for the course can be downloaded here.

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