Africa Notes: Top Stories from West Africa

Violence and War

In Court: Kiobel, Shell and Nigeria

  • The US Supreme Court decided to hear new arguments in the Kiobel case, about Shell’s complicity in the torture of Nigerians in the Niger Delta. (For more on this case see my previous post).
  • I had a chance to meet Justice Scalia when he was at our campus this past Thursday but he was tight-lipped on this active case. He did seem to suggest that he already knew what the outcome would be. And he didn’t seem too unhappy. So that could be a sign that we are about to see a more restricted interpretation of the Alien Tort Statute very soon. Also, I overheard him talking about the Citizens United decision and his view on the freedom of speech. From that I take it that he, at least, doesn’t see that decision really bearing much weight on the broader question of whether corporations are citizens.
  • Knox at Opinio Juris seems to agree that we should be pessimistic about future use of the ATS to implement human rights law.

Elections and Democracy

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