03 Oktober 2022

Rising Before Sinking

On 22 September 2022, just one day before global climate protests took place in around 450 locations, the UN Human Rights Committee (Committee) has published its landmark decision in the case Daniel Billy et al. v. Australia. In casu, the Committee found that Australia failed to adequately protect members of an indigenous community present in four small, low-lying islands in the Torres Strait region from adverse impacts of climate change, which resulted in the violation of the complainants’ rights to enjoy their culture (Art. 27 ICPPR) and to be free from arbitrary interferences with their private life, family and home (Art. 17 ICCPR). The Committee thereby issued the first decision at the international level to tackle substantive human rights questions in the context of climate change that relate to the current situation of small islands and their indigenous inhabitants. Continue reading >>
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23 September 2022

The Republic Debate in Australia

With the death of long reigning monarch Queen Elizabeth II, and the ascension of King Charles III, a conversation has been reignited as to whether it is time for Australia to move to a republic. In Australia, this conversation is complicated by the failure of the republic referendum in 1999. The divisions over the model of selecting the Head of State that marred that vote remain unresolved, and there is a distinct lack of any urgency within the broader Australian public. Continue reading >>
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31 August 2022

What Makes Responsible Government Responsible?

How important is it for a Parliament to know which Ministers are appointed to administer which departments? This odd question has been at the centre of a furore in Australia in recent weeks. It has focussed attention on the legal and political requirements for ‘responsible government’, to use the characterisation of the relationship between Crown, Ministers and Parliament that is in common use in parliamentary systems in the British tradition, including those in Australia. It raises some intriguing questions for the construction of the executive chapter of the Australian Constitution, which are all the more important in times of global concern about democratic decline. Continue reading >>
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21 Januar 2022

Novak Djokovic and the Australian Migration System

The cancellation of tennis star Novak Djokovic’s visa by the Australian government last week highlighted some of the legal contestations and confusion surrounding vaccination mandates, but also gave a glimpse of Australian migration and public law. There is hope that the proceeding will provide some momentum for the reform of its most controversial aspects. Continue reading >>
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14 Dezember 2021

Wie die Überwachung des öffentlichen Raums den politischen Protest in Australien aushöhlt

Während Protestbewegungen auf der ganzen Welt an Schwung gewinnen - von Extinction Rebellion, Black Lives Matter bis hin zu starken Pro-Demokratie-Protesten in Chile und Hong Kong - bauen Regierungen auf der ganzen Welt ihre Überwachungskapazitäten im Namen des "Schutzes der Öffentlichkeit" und der "Bewältigung von Notfällen" aus. Australien ist keine Ausnahme von diesem Trend. Continue reading >>
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How Public Space Surveillance is Eroding Political Protests in Australia

As protest movements are gaining momentum across the world, with Extinction Rebellion, Black Lives Matter, and strong pro-democracy protests in Chile and Hong Kong are taking centre stage, governments around the world are increasing their surveillance capacities in the name of “protecting the public” and “addressing emergencies”. Australia is not an exception to this trend. Continue reading >>
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16 November 2021

Rhetorik der Terrorismusbekämpfung, das Abschreckungsparadigma und das Ende des Asyls

Obwohl der Zusammenhang zwischen Terrorismus und Asyl in Australien keine empirische Grundlage hat, haben bestimmte Gesetze, Maßnahmen und Praktiken, die im Jahr 2001 zur Terrorismusbekämpfung eingeführt wurden, bis heute Bestand - insbesondere die Offshore-Abfertigung von Asylbewerbern, die auf dem Seeweg ankommen. Ich behaupte, dass Australiens Abschreckungsmodell eine negative "Signalwirkung" auf die heutige Asylpolitik und -praxis einiger europäischer Staaten hatte. Continue reading >>
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Counterterrorism rhetoric, the deterrence paradigm, and the end of asylum: an antipodean viewpoint

The Australian government’s agenda of progressive border securitization was, initially, sustained by counter-terrorism rhetoric. However, the focus of concern has shifted away from the potential terrorist threat posed by asylum seekers towards deterring unauthorised maritime migration. Though the nexus between terrorism and asylum lacks an empirical basis in Australia, certain laws, policies and practices premised on counterterrorism in 2001 endure to this day – offshore processing of asylum seekers arriving by sea, notably. I argue that Australia’s deterrence model has had a negative ‘signalling effect’ on some European states’ contemporary asylum policies and practice. Continue reading >>
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08 November 2021

Eine Kultur der Ausgrenzung wird in die Extreme getrieben

Seit seinen Anfängen hat Australien seine weitreichenden verfassungsrechtlichen Befugnisse im Bereich der Ausländer- und Einwanderungspolitik genutzt, um ausgrenzende Gesetze zu erlassen. In den zwei Jahrzehnten seit dem 11. September hat die Tendenz zur Ausgrenzung deutlich zugenommen. Continue reading >>
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Post-9/11 Australia has pushed a tradition of exclusion to constitutional extremes

Since its earliest days, Australia’s sweeping constitutional powers over aliens and immigration have been drawn on to support broad exclusionary laws. In the two decades since 9/11, the tendency towards exclusion has increased significantly. Continue reading >>
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12 April 2021

Australia and the right of repatriation

A key pillar of Australia’s response to the COVID-19 crisis has been its closure of international borders. Since Australia’s constitution lacks an express bill of rights, Australians stranded abroad have turned to the United Nations as a last resort. Continue reading >>
22 Februar 2021
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The Australian Response to COVID-19: A Year in Review

Australia’s legal and political response to the outbreak of COVID-19 has been marked by the formation of a new intergovernmental forum, the National Cabinet, to lead a coordinated national response to the pandemic, and the declaration of successive states of emergency at the federal and state levels activating extraordinary executive powers, including limitations on movement and border closures. Australia’s response has, to date, resulted in the successful curtailment of community transmission of COVID-19 in Australian States and Territories. However, the response to the pandemic has also involved the removal of existing mechanisms of executive accountability, suspensions of Parliament and little parliamentary scrutiny or other oversight of executive action. These democratic deficits present fresh challenges for Australia going forward, particularly as the National Cabinet structure becomes permanent and the states of emergency endure for the foreseeable future. Continue reading >>
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16 November 2017

Optionen für die dritte Option – Fortschrittliche Regelungsmodelle anderer Länder

Der am 08.11.2017 veröffentlichte Beschluss des Bundesverfassungsgerichts enthält eine Deadline, die es in sich hat. Bis zum 31.12.2018 muss die Legislative eine verfassungsgemäße Lösung finden, mit der die angegriffenen Regelungen des Personenstandsgesetzes ersetzt werden. Der Beschluss nennt zwei mögliche Lösungswege: die Schaffung einer dritten Option und den generellen Verzicht auf einen personenstandrechtlichen Geschlechtseintrag. Beide Lösungswege bedeuten Neuland für die rechtliche Geschlechterordnung, allerdings nur für Deutschland. Wer ins Ausland blickt, stellt fest: Andere Länder haben längst innovative Regelungsmodelle gefunden. Continue reading >>
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28 Oktober 2014
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Bicameralism: an antipodean perspective

As outposts of the British Empire, the various state parliaments of Australia, and New Zealand as a whole, inherited the Westminster system of government with an elected lower house, in which government is formed, and an unelected house of review. In little under two hundred years, these parliaments have undergone a range of reforms, including democratisation of their upper houses. Two jurisdictions, however, took bolder steps: the Australian state of Queensland, and New Zealand, both demolished their upper houses entirely – with mixed results, at best. Continue reading >>
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09 Februar 2013

„Not universal, but all over the place“: Zur Globalität der Geschichte des Völkerrechts

Eine Weltgeschichte des Völkerrechts: Da steckt gleich eine Handvoll höchst […] Continue reading >>
01 Februar 2012

Adressing Race in Australia’s Constitution

By PAUL KILDEA Amending the text of the Australian Constitution […] Continue reading >>
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