Public international law

Public international law is the system of laws governing relations between states and other subjects of international law. Unlike national law, there is no central legislative organ. Sources of public international law include general principles of law, treaties, and customary law.


Alleged crimes against humanity in Bahrain: Serious investigations must be initiated

Arab Spring

ECCHR sent an advisory opinion to the Bahrain Independent Commission of Inquiry. The statement seeks to draw the commission’s attention to the cases of two persons who suffered severe injuries when they were shot at by Bahraini security forces before being forcibly removed from hospital, imprisoned, and abused.


The case of Bünyamin E in Pakistan


ECCHR supported the case of the German victim of a drone strike in Pakistan, Bünyamin E. According to ECCHR’s examinations, the case raises a number of serious doubts as to the application and interpretation of the law and shows insufficient investigations.


New perspectives on the law: Decolonial legal critique and practice

Research & Academia

The anthology Dekoloniale Rechtskritik und Rechtspraxis, which will be published by Nomos Verlag in August 2020, is the first volume to collect fundamental texts on decolonial legal theory. Interdisciplinary theoretical approaches by scholars such as Antony Anghie, Martti Koskenniemi, Silvia Rivera Cusicanqui and Makau Mutua are complied in German for the first time.


Amicus curiae brief on command responsibility in Colombia’s Special Jurisdiction for Peace

Peace process

ECCHR criticizes the passing of a new law in context of peace negotiations with Colombian FARC. The law contains gaps, including those regarding military commanders’ effective control over their subordinate units.


The Padilla case and crimes against humanity

Armed conflict

General Padilla was General Commander of the Colombian Military Forces when the practice of “falsos positivos” escalated. He is presumably responsible for international crimes committed by his subordinates, he neither prevented nor punished the wrongdoers.


Kiobel case: ECCHR supports victims of corporate abuse before US Supreme Court


ECCHR supports claimants in a case of corporate crime in front of the US Supreme Court. The proceedings are a continuation of the high-profile case taken against Shell. The claimants argue that Shell, through its Nigerian subsidiary, aided and abetted crimes, including torture and extrajudicial executions.

Sri Lanka

Sri Lankan civil war: Government officials still unpunished

Armed conflict

Since the final stage of the Sri Lankan civil war, ECCHR has been working to ensure that high-ranking military personnel and (former) members of the Sri Lankan government and security forces are prosecuted for their role in war crimes, crimes against humanity and sexual violence.


Torture in Guantánamo: Spain closes investigations into “Bush Six”


In March 2009, ECCHR partner lawyer Gonzalo Boye filed a criminal complaint against six former US officials of the Bush administration regarding their accountability for violations of international law, including war crimes and torture. The US officials became known as the “Bush Six.”