16 December 2013
SHARES News Items Overview: 16 November-15 December 2013
This is our News Items Overview of 16 November-15 December 2013, a summary of recent news relating to shared responsibility.
- Saudi Arabia is planning to build a new national army for the Syrian opposition, aiming to create a force trained outside of Syria that is capable of defeating the regime of President Bashar al-Assad. The training of rebels had reportedly already been under way in Jordan with the aid of Pakistani, French, and US instructors.
- The Court of Justice of the EU held in the Bundesrepublik Deutschland v. Kaveh Puid case that a member state which is prohibited from returning an asylum seeker under the Dublin II Regulation to a country where the applicant would be at risk of being ill-treated, is not obliged to assume responsibility for that application.
- A piece in the New York Times draws attention to the risks raised by the decision of the Security Council to authorise the UN Force Intervention Brigade in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (comprised of soldiers from South Africa, Tanzania, and Malawi), to ‘neutralize armed groups’, contrary to prior passive peacekeeping forces.
- The New York Times reports that the US is considering to place the chemical components of the weapons on a barge at sea where they would be dissolved or incinerated. Officials from the OPCW would monitor the destruction, which would be carried out following safety standards set by legislation in the US and the EU. By destroying the weapons this way, the effort would not require approval of any particular country.
- The US and Afghanistan have agreed on a bilateral security agreement that would allow for a lasting American troop presence. The draft agreement states that US operations will ‘complement and support’ Afghan missions.
- UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said in his address to the UN Conference on Climate Change taking place in Warsaw, that ‘all of us in this room share a momentous responsibility (…) We must rise to these challenges with wisdom, urgency and resolve to address climate change.’
- Citing mounting human rights abuses, sexual violence and other ‘horrors’, Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson called on the international community for immediate action to halt the rapidly deteriorating situation in conflict-wracked Central African Republic (CAR). He proposed a UN peacekeeping mission to replace the current African-led International Support Mission.
- At its 19th meeting, the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, established a new international mechanism to deal with the impacts of climate-related loss and damage entitled the Warsaw international mechanism for loss and damage.
- Afghan President, Hamid Karzai angered about NATO drone strikes which had killed civilians in southern Afghanistan, lashed out at US allies.
- A Danish cargo vessel is due to load Syria’s chemical arms stockpile and transfer it to a US ship in early January 2014. The draft plan has been drawn up by the OPCW.
- Speaking at the launch of the Fourth Replenishment of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria, US Secretary of State John Kerry called on global health partners to embrace all available tools to defeat AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria, saying that shared responsibility was the only way to succeed.
- The UN Security Council approved the French-sponsored Resolution 2127, which authorises the increase in military action in the CAR by French and African troops.
- The lawyers for two Guantánamo Bay detainees claimed before the European Court of Human Rights that the detainees were tortured in a secret ‘black site’ in Poland. The detainees allege they were captured by the CIA and transferred to the black site in Poland, where they were interrogated and tortured. One of the detainees claims he was then secretly transferred, again with the help of Polish officials, to Morocco and afterwards to Guantánamo Bay.
- French troops have been deployed in the CAR to provide operational support to the new International Support Mission to the Central African Republic (MISCA). Other countries have offered logistical support to transport troops to CAR, and the EU is providing substantial financial support to the MISCA.
- A US embassy spokesman in Turkey announced that the US has suspended all non-lethal aid to the opposition in northern Syria, after forces from the Islamic Front (a new coalition of six major Islamist rebel groups) seized bases and warehouses belonging to the Western-backed Supreme Military Council. Likewise, a spokesman from the British embassy in Turkey stated that ‘We have no plans to deliver any equipment while the situation remains so unclear.’
- On 10 December 2013, the Grand Chamber of the Court of Justice of the EU issued a judgment in Case C 394/12. It held that the opportunities for an asylum seeker to challenge a decision to transfer him/her under the Dublin II Regulation are limited once a member state has agreed to take charge of the examination of his/her application.