For some coastal States, the rise in sea levels may cause the baselines and national maritime spaces to regress towards the coast. From a legal point of view, the question arises as to whether, in the event of such phenomenon occurring, the States concerned would be able to maintain their current baselines and outer limits of national maritime spaces. According to some authors, this would be prohibited by the existing rules of the international law of the sea. If this were the case, one would nevertheless still have to consider whether the States affected by sea-level rise could invoke a state of necessity in order not to apply, without committing an internationally wrongful act, any rules of international law stipulating that baselines are ambulatory. In order to answer that question, this essay examines and applies to the present case all the cumulative conditions laid down in Article 25 of the Draft Articles on State Responsibility adopted in 2001 by the International Law Commission.
In the past thirty years, a growing number of international agreements and acts of international institutions has resorted to different kinds of confiscation (“direct confiscation”, “value confiscation”, “enlarged confiscation” or “nonconviction based confiscation”) to contrast and suppress international and transnational crimes. It can be considered that the flexibility – in terms of variety of measures and functions – of confiscation, together with the forced and permanent deprivation of property to which it always leads, significantly affect the favor towards this measure by States and international organisations. The European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), taking into account the aforementioned proliferation of international acts and agreements concerning the fight to criminal activities, maintains that common “European and even universal legal standards” can be said to exist which encourage the confiscation of property linked to serious criminal offences. Moreover, the Court has gone so far as to maintain that, in accordance with such “universal legal standards”, States Parties to the European Convention of Human Rights must be given “a wide margin of appreciation with regard to what constitutes the appropriate means of applying measures to control the use of property such as the confiscation of all types of proceeds of crime”. However, the implementation of such measures by States authorities must conform with human rights guarantees – inter alia the principle of legality in criminal matters, due process rights and property rights – provided for in customary and conventional international law. This essay seeks to examine the relevant case law of the ECtHR and to focus on the possibility of reconciling, on the one hand, international obligations on the protection of human rights and, on the other hand, international agreements and acts – concerning the fight against criminal activities – that provide for the various types of confiscation measures.
Many regional integration systems, inspired by the preliminary ruling procedure under the current article 267 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union, incorporate models for cooperation between national courts and international courts and tribunals that vary significantly from one to the other. This work seeks above all to classify those models and to pose the question of which model, irrespective of how much it is actually used in practice, appears ‐ at least potentially ‐ to afford the best means of attaining the goal of regional integration that each of the systems analysed pursues to varying degrees.