Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 98

Search results for: Geneva Conventions

98 The Applicability of International Humanitarian Law to Non-State Actors

Authors: Yin Cheung Lam


In 1949, the ratification of the Geneva Conventions heralded the international community’s adoption of a new universal and non-discriminatory approach to human rights in situations of conflict. However, with the proliferation of international terrorism after the 9/11 attacks on the United States (U.S.), the international community’s uneven and contradictory implementations of international humanitarian law (IHL) questioned its agenda of universal human rights. Specifically, the derogation from IHL has never been so pronounced in the U.S. led ‘War on Terror’. While an extensive literature has ‘assessed the impact’ of the implementation of the Geneva Conventions, limited attention has been paid to interrogating the ways in which the Geneva Conventions and its resulting implementation have functioned to discursively reproduce certain understandings of human rights between states and non-state actors. Through a discursive analysis of the Geneva Conventions and the conceptualization of human rights in relation to terrorism, this thesis problematises the way in which the U.S. has understood and reproduced understandings of human rights. Using the U.S. ‘War on Terror’ as an example, it seeks to extend previous analyses of the U.S.’ practice of IHL through a qualitative discursive analysis of the human rights content that appears in the Geneva Conventions in addition to the speeches and policy documents on the ‘War on Terror’.

Keywords: discursive analysis, human rights, non-state actors, war on terror

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97 Non-State Actors and Their Liabilities in International Armed Conflicts

Authors: Shivam Dwivedi, Saumya Kapoor


The Israeli Supreme Court in Public Committee against Torture in Israel v. Government of Israel observed the presence of non-state actors in cross-border terrorist activities thereby making the role of non-state actors in terrorism the center of discussion under the scope of International Humanitarian Law. Non-state actors and their role in a conflict have also been traversed upon by the Tadic case decided by the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. However, there still are lacunae in International Humanitarian Law when it comes to determining the nature of a conflict, especially when non-state groups act within the ambit of various states, for example, Taliban in Afghanistan or the groups operating in Ukraine and Georgia. Thus, the objective of writing this paper would be to observe the ways by which non-state actors particularly terrorist organizations could be brought under the ambit of Additional Protocol I. Additional Protocol I is a 1977 amendment protocol to the Geneva Conventions relating to the protection of victims of international conflicts which basically outlaws indiscriminate attacks on civilian populations, forbids conscription of children and preserves various other human rights during the war. In general, the Additional Protocol I reaffirms the provisions of the original four Geneva Conventions. Since provisions of Additional Protocol I apply only to cases pertaining to International Armed Conflicts, the answer to the problem should lie in including the scope for ‘transnational armed conflict’ in the already existing definition of ‘International Armed Conflict’ within Common Article 2 of the Geneva Conventions. This would broaden the applicability of the provisions in cases of non-state groups and render an international character to the conflict. Also, the non-state groups operating or appearing to operate should be determined by the test laid down in the Nicaragua case by the International Court of Justice and not under the Tadic case decided by the International Criminal Tribunal for Former Yugoslavia in order to provide a comprehensive system to deal with such groups. The result of the above proposal, therefore, would enhance the scope of the application of International Humanitarian Law to non-state groups and individuals.

Keywords: Geneva Conventions, International Armed Conflict, International Humanitarian Law, non-state actors

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96 From Restraint to Obligation: The Protection of the Environment in Times of Armed Conflict

Authors: Aaron Walayat


Protection of the environment in international law has been one of the most developed in the context of international humanitarian law. This paper examines the history of the protection of the environment in times of armed conflict, beginning with the traditional notion of restraint observed in antiquity towards the obligation to protect the environment, examining the treaties and agreements, both binding and non-binding which have contributed to environmental protection in war. The paper begins with a discussion of the ancient concept of restraint. This section examines the social norms in favor of protection of the environment as observed in the Bible, Greco-Roman mythology, and even more contemporary literature. The study of the traditional rejection of total war establishes the social foundation on which the current legal regime has stemmed. The paper then studies the principle of restraint as codified in international humanitarian law. It mainly examines Additional Protocol I of the Geneva Convention of 1949 and existing international law concerning civilian objects and the principles of international humanitarian law in the classification between civilian objects and military objectives. The paper then explores the environment’s classification as both a military objective and as a civilian object as well as explores arguments in favor of the classification of the whole environment as a civilian object. The paper will then discuss the current legal regime surrounding the protection of the environment, discussing some declarations and conventions including the 1868 Declaration of St. Petersburg, the 1907 Hague Convention No. IV, the Geneva Conventions, and the 1976 Environmental Modification Convention. The paper concludes with the outline noting the movement from codification of the principles of restraint into the various treaties, agreements, and declarations of the current regime of international humanitarian law. This paper provides an analysis of the history and significance of the relationship between international humanitarian law as a major contributor to the growing field of international environmental law.

Keywords: armed conflict, environment, legal regime, restraint

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95 Energy Service Companies as a Facilitator for Implementation of Energy-Environment Conventions

Authors: Bahareh Arghand


The establishment of rules and regulations for more effective energy-environment interactions are essential to achieving sustainable development. Sustainable development requires mechanisms that can promote compliance in energy-environment conventions. There are many binding agreements and non-binding instruments at regional and international levels on energy and the environment. These conventions try to decrease conflicts of interest between energy, environment and economic by legal principles and practical mechanisms. The major core of conventions is their implementations because the poor implementation and enforcement power affect their success. In this regard, the main goal of this study is proposing the effective implementation mechanisms. Energy service companies' (ESCOs) activities can improve energy efficiency and decrease the environmental degradations. Therefore, it can be proposed and assessed the merit mechanism of ESCO performance as a facilitator to implement energy-environment conventions. An assessment of ESCO performance, including its potentials, problems, and limitations, as a facilitator for effective implementation of the energy-environment convention, is included. This study is oriented towards effective development and application of laws and the function of ESCOs as appropriate economic instruments and facilitator for implementation of energy-environment conventions. The resulting system of close cooperation between the energy-environment conventions and ESCOs is geared toward advancing environmental protection and economic factors by the transfer of environmentally-sound technologies that meet sustainable development objectives.

Keywords: energy-environment conventions, energy service company, facilitator mechanism, sustainable development

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94 Anti Corruption Conventions in Nigeria: Legal and Administrative Challenges

Authors: Mohammed Albakariyu Kabir


There is a trend in development discourse to understand and explain the level of corruption in Nigeria, its anti-corruption crusade and why it is failing, as well as its level of compliance with International standards of United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC) & African Union Convention on Converting and Preventing Corruption) to which Nigeria is a signatory. This paper discusses the legal and Constitutional provisions relating to corrupt practices and safeguards in Nigeria, as well as the obstacles to the implementation of these Conventions.The paper highlights the challenges posed to the Anti-Corruption crusade by analysing the loopholes that exist both in administrative structure and in scope of the relevant laws. The paper argues that Nigerian Constitution did not make adequate provisions for the implementation of the conventions, hence a proposal which will ensure adequate provision for implementing the conventions to better the lives of Nigerians. The paper concludes that there is the need to build institutional parameters, adequate constitutional and structural safeguards, as well as to synergise strategies, collaborations and alliances to facilitate the timely domestication and implementation of the conventions.

Keywords: anti-corruption, corruption, convention, domestication, poverty, state parties

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93 The Convention Refugee Definition-from Universal to Regional: A Systematic Review

Authors: Wen Jiayuan


This article traces the broadening of the refugee definition from the early 1970s onwards. It first discusses Article 1A(1), the core universal legal definition of ‘refugee’ provided by the 1951 Geneva Convention. It then focuses on Article 1A(2), read together with the 1967 Protocol, which without time or geographical limits, offers a general definition of the refugee as including any person who is outside their country or origin and unable or unwilling to return there or to avail themselves of its protection, owing to a well-founded fear of persecution for reasons of race, religion, nationality, social group or political opinion. It then shifts to the contemporary alternative refugee definitions adopted in regional areas, namely Africa, Latin America, and Europe. By looking deeply into the 1969 OAU Convention, the 1984 Cartagena Declaration, and ECtHR, the assertation is that while the appearance of new definitions may lead to a more responsive international environment, it may also undermine the consistency of the international refugee regime.

Keywords: refugee definition, 1951 Geneva Convention, 1969 OAU Convention, 1984 Cartagena Declaration

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92 The Academic Achievement of Writing via Project-Based Learning

Authors: Duangkamol Thitivesa


This paper focuses on the use of project work as a pretext for applying the conventions of writing, or the correctness of mechanics, usage, and sentence formation, in a content-based class in a Rajabhat University. Its aim was to explore to what extent the student teachers’ academic achievement of the basic writing features against the 70% attainment target after the use of project is. The organization of work around an agreed theme in which the students reproduce language provided by texts and instructors is expected to enhance students’ correct writing conventions. The sample of the study comprised of 38 fourth-year English major students. The data was collected by means of achievement test and student writing works. The scores in the summative achievement test were analyzed by mean score, standard deviation, and percentage. It was found that the student teachers do more achieve of practicing mechanics and usage, and less in sentence formation. The students benefited from the exposure to texts during conducting the project; however, their automaticity of how and when to form phrases and clauses into simple/complex sentences had room for improvement.

Keywords: project-based learning, project work, writing conventions, academic achievement

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91 A Qualitative Anthropological Analysis of Competing Health Perceptions in Chagas-Related Consultations in Non-Endemic Geneva

Authors: Marina Gold, Yves Jackson, David Parrat


The high predominance of Latin American migrants in Geneva from countries where Chagas disease is endemic (Bolivia, Brazil, Argentina, Colombia) is increasing the incidence of chronic Chagas-related problems, especially cardiovascular complications. The precarious migratory status of what are mostly undocumented migrants complicates access to health and affects patients’ and doctors’ health perceptions regarding screening, treatment and monitoring of Chagas-related health concerns. This project results from a 3 year collaboration between the Geneva University Hospital and the NGO Mundo Sano to understand the following questions: 1) how do Latin American migrants perceive their health? 2) What do they understand from Chagas disease? 3) Are patients’ and doctors’ health perceptions similar or do they have competing agendas? This paper aims to present the results of a long-term study that interrogates health perceptions among Latin American migrants in Geneva. The first phase consisted in completing surveys at three community screening events (2016, 2017. 2018), and the results of these surveys reveal the subordination of the importance of health to that of having met economic family obligation. That is, health is important only when it becomes an impediment to economic gain. The contradictory result emerged that people are aware of the importance of health prevention in order to ensure long-term health, but they do not always have agency over their life-style habits (healthy food, regular exercise, emotional stability). The second phase of the research collected open-ended interviews with selected participants, in order to explore in more detail how Latin American migrants deal with Chagas in a different socio-political and economic context to that of endemic countries. These interviews (5 in total) reveal mixed methods of managing health: social networks, access to health care transnationally (in Geneva, Spain and back in their home country), and different valuations of health problems in each situation. The third phase consisted in observations of doctor-patient consultations and further extended interviews with patients to determine doctor/patient health perceptions around Chagas disease. This phase is ongoing, but it has yielded preliminarily observations regarding the expectations that patients’ have of doctors, and the understanding of doctors’ to patients’ complex situations. Positive and complementary health perceptions include patients’ feeling that doctors in Geneva are more understanding, more knowledgeable and less racist than those in their home country, who do not provide detailed information about Chagas or its treatment and discriminate against them for being indigenous or from poor rural areas, enabling a better communication between doctors and patients. Possible conflicting health perceptions include patients addressing their health concerns more holistically and encountering the specialist’s limitations to only treating one health concern, given time limitations and lack of competition with their colleagues (the general practitioner that referred the patient, for example). The implications of this study extend the case of Chagas disease in Geneva and is relevant for all chronic concerns and migratory contexts of precarity.

Keywords: chagas disease, health perceptions, Latin American Migrants, non-endemic countries

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90 The Impact of Judeo-Christian Myth and Celtic Myth in Selected Plays of William Shakespeare

Authors: Smriti Mary Gupta


This article intends to show strong facts of ‘Judeo-Christian myth’ and ‘Celtic myth’ in selected plays of William Shakespeare. Giving the vast proliferation of Shakespeare studies we examine the strong impact of Bible in his plays. Inevitably, for instance, the study of Shakespeare and the Bible overlaps the study of Shakespeare and religion, which justify the use of Judeo-Christian myth in his works. There is some evidence that Shakespeare had read and used the ‘Geneva Bible’ in his works. The glimpse of parables and references of Biblical myth can be seen very clearly in Macbeth, King Lear and Measure for Measure. Defining a religion based on myths is difficult because it is built upon a belief of large number of people in the society. The Judeo-Christian myth which is based on the Bible, Celtic religious myth will also be discussed in this paper which had a strong impact on the audience of sixteenth century and it is still continuing at the present time.

Keywords: Celtic myth, Geneva Bible, Judeo-Christian myth, Shakespearean plays

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89 Sustainable Housing Framework for the Czech Republic: A Comparative Analysis of International and National Strategies

Authors: Jakub Adamec, Svatava Janouskova, Tomas Hak


The necessity of sustainable housing is explicitly embedded in ‘The 2030 agenda for sustainable development’, in particular, goal 11 ‘sustainable cities and communities’. Every UN member state is obligated to implement strategies from the agenda, including a strategy for sustainable housing into the practice in the local context. As shown in many countries, the lack of knowledge represses the adaptation process of sustainable strategies by governments. Hence, this study explores the concept of sustainable housing within the Czech Republic. The research elaborates on this term, and its current definition concerning ‘Geneva UN Charter on Sustainable Housing’. To this day, the charter represents the most comprehensive framework for a sustainable housing concept. Researchers conducted a comparative analysis of 38 international and 195 Czech national strategic documents. As a result, the charter‘s and strategic documents‘ goals were interconnected, identifying the most represented targets (e.g. improved environmental and energy performance of dwellings, resilient urban settlements which use renewable energy, and sustainable and integrated transport systems). The research revealed, even though the concept of sustainable housing is still dominated by environmental aspects, that social aspects significantly increased its importance. Additionally, this theoretical framework will serve as a foundation for the sustainable housing index development for the Czech Republic.

Keywords: comparative analysis, Czech national strategy, Geneva un charter, sustainable housing, urban theory

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88 Child Labour: Enforcement of Right to Promote Child Development in Nigeria

Authors: G. Salavwa, P. Erhijakpor Jr., H. Ukwu


This study will explore child labour issues in Nigeria because it is capable of affecting the physical and general well-being of children who perform hazardous work. This feat will be achieved through qualitative research methodology. Data collection shall be elicited by oral interviews and documental content analysis to delve on the application of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), International Labour Organization ILO and Geneva Convention relating to child labour practices in Nigeria. This will include the relevance of present domestic laws relating to child labour as implemented in Nigeria, together with factors that contribute to the practice of child labour in the country. The oral interview data analysis will be performed by breaking the interview data into significant statements and themes. This shall be done by comparing and determining the commonalities that are prevalent in the participants’ views regarding child labour menace in Nigeria. Presumably, findings from this study shall unveil that a poor educational policy, a widespread poverty level which is mostly prevalent amongst families in the rural areas of the country, a lack of employment for adults, have led to the ineffectiveness of the local child labour laws in Nigeria. These has in turn culminated into a somewhat non-implementation of the international laws of the CRC, ILO and Geneva Declaration on child labour to which the Nigerian government is a signatory. Based on the finding, this study will calls on the government of Nigeria to extend its free educational policy from the elementary, secondary to tertiary educations. The government also has to ensure that offenders of children’s rights should face a severe punishment.

Keywords: commonalities, tertiary, constitution, qualitative

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87 Child Labour Issue: Practice of Enforecement of Right of the Child in Nigeria

Authors: Gift Salawa, Perkins Erhijakpor, Henry Ukwu


This study will explore child labour issues in Nigeria because it is capable of affecting the physical and general well-being of children who perform hazardous work. This feat will be achieved through qualitative research methodology. Data collection shall be elicited by oral interviews and documental content analysis to delve on the application of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), International Labour Organization ILO and Geneva Convention relating to child labour practices in Nigeria. This will include the relevance of present domestic laws relating to child labour as implemented in Nigeria, together with factors that contribute to the practice of child labour in the country. The oral interview data analysis will be performed by breaking the interview data into significant statements and themes. This shall be done by comparing and determining the commonalities that are prevalent in the participants’ views regarding child labour menace in Nigeria. Presumably, findings from this study shall unveil that a poor educational policy, a widespread poverty level which is mostly prevalent amongst families in the rural areas of the country, a lack of employment for adults, have led to the ineffectiveness of the local child labour laws in Nigeria. These has in turn culminated into a somewhat non-implementation of the international laws of the CRC, ILO and Geneva Declaration on child labour to which the Nigerian government is a signatory. Based on the finding, this study will calls on the government of Nigeria to extend its free educational policy from the elementary, secondary to tertiary educations. The government also has to ensure that offenders of children’s rights should face a severe punishment.

Keywords: child labour, educational policy, human right, protection right

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86 Recurrent Patterns of Netspeak among Selected Nigerians on WhatsApp Platform: A Quest for Standardisation

Authors: Lily Chimuanya, Esther Ajiboye, Emmanuel Uba


One of the consequences of online communication is the birth of new orthography genres characterised by novel conventions of abbreviation and acronyms usually referred to as Netspeak. Netspeak, also known as internet slang, is a style of writing mainly used in online communication to limit the length of text characters and to save time. The aim of this study is to evaluate how second language users of the English language have internalised this new convention of writing; identify the recurrent patterns of Netspeak; and assess the consistency of the use of the identified patterns in relation to their meanings. The study is corpus-based, and data drawn from WhatsApp chart pages of selected groups of Nigerian English speakers show a large occurrence of inconsistencies in the patterns of Netspeak and their meanings. The study argues that rather than emphasise the negative impact of Netspeak on the communicative competence of second language users, studies should focus on suggesting models as yardsticks for standardising the usage of Netspeak and indeed all other emerging language conventions resulting from online communication. This stance stems from the inevitable global language transformation that is eminent with the coming of age of information technology.

Keywords: abbreviation, acronyms, Netspeak, online communication, standardisation

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85 An Interactive Online Academic Writing Resource for Research Students in Engineering

Authors: Eleanor K. P. Kwan


English academic writing, it has been argued, is an acquired language even for English speakers. For research students whose English is not their first language, however, the acquisition process is often more challenging. Instead of hoping that students would acquire the conventions themselves through extensive reading, there is a need for the explicit teaching of linguistic conventions in academic writing, as explicit teaching could help students to be more aware of the different generic conventions in different disciplines in science. This paper presents an interuniversity effort to develop an online academic writing resource for research students in five subdisciplines in engineering, upon the completion of the needs analysis which indicates that students and faculty members are more concerned about students’ ability to organize an extended text than about grammatical accuracy per se. In particular, this paper focuses on the materials developed for thesis writing (also called dissertation writing in some tertiary institutions), as theses form an essential graduation requirement for all research students and this genre is also expected to demonstrate the writer’s competence in research and contributions to the research community. Drawing on Swalesian move analysis of research articles, this online resource includes authentic materials written by students and faculty members from the participating institutes. Highlight will be given to several aspects and challenges of developing this online resource. First, as the online resource aims at moving beyond providing instructions on academic writing, a range of interactive activities need to be designed to engage the users, which is one feature which differentiates this online resource from other equally informative websites on academic writing. Second, it will also include discussion on divergent textual practices in different subdisciplines, which help to illustrate different practices among these subdisciplines. Third, since theses, probably one of the most extended texts a research student will complete, require effective use of signposting devices to facility readers’ understanding, this online resource will also provide both explanation and activities on different components that contribute to text coherence. Finally results from piloting will also be included to shed light on the effectiveness of the materials, which could be useful for future development.

Keywords: academic writing, English for academic purposes, online language learning materials, scientific writing

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84 Language Rights and the Challenge of National Integration: The Nigerian Experience

Authors: Odewumi Olatunde, Adegun Sunday


Linguistic diversity is seen to complicate attempts to build a stable and cohesive political community. Hence, the challenge of integration is enormous in a multi-ethno-lingual country like Nigeria. In the same vein, justification for minority language rights claims in relation to broader political theories of justice, freedom and democracy cannot be ignored. It is in the light of the fore-going that this paper explores Nigeria’s experiments at language policy and planning(LPP) and the long drawn agitations for self-determination and linguistic freedom by the minority ethnic groups in the polity which has been exacerbated by the National Policy on Education language provisions. The paper succinctly reviews Nigeria’s LPP efforts and its attendant theater of conflicts; explores international attempts at evolving normative principles of freedom and equality for language policy and finally evaluates the position of the Nigerian LPP in the light of evolving international conventions. On this premise, it is concluded that giving a conscientious and honest implementation of the Nigerian language provisions as assessed from their face validity, the nation’s efforts could be exonerated from running afoul of any known civilized values and best practices. It is, therefore, recommended that an effectual and consistent commitment to implementation driven by a renewed political will is what is required for the nation to succeed in this direction.

Keywords: integration, rights, challenge, conventions, policy

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83 Punishing Unfit Defendants for International Crimes Committed Decades Ago

Authors: MD Mustakimur Rahman


On the one hand, while dealing with temporally distant international crimes (TDICs), prosecutors are likely to encounter many defendants suffering from severe physical or mental disorders. The concept of a defendant's "fitness," on the other hand, is based on the notion that an alleged perpetrator must be protected from a conviction resulting from a lack of participation or competence in making proper judgments. As a result, if a defendant is temporarily or permanently mentally ill, going through a formal criminal trial may be highly unlikely. TheExtraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia(ECCC), for example, arrested and tried IengThirth for crimes against humanity, grave breaches of the 1949 Geneva Conventions, and genocide. Still, the Trial Chamber found her incompetent to stand trial and released her in 2011. Although the prosecution had a lot of evidence against her, she was free from prosecution. It suggests that alleged war criminals may be granted immunity due to their unfitness, implying that unfitness is a hurdle to combating impunity. Given the absence of a formal criminal trial, international criminal law (ICL) should take steps to address this issue. ICL, according to Mark A. Drumbl, has yet to develop its penology; hence it borrows penological rationales from domestic criminal law. For example, international crimes tribunals such as the Nuremberg Tribunal and the Tokyo Tribunal, ad hoc tribunals have used retribution, utilitarianism, and rehabilitation as punishment justifications. On the other hand, like in the case of IengThirth, a criminal trial may not always be feasible. As a result, instead of allowing impunity, this paper proposes informal trials. This paper, for example, suggests two approaches to dealing with unfit defendants: 1) trial without punishment and 2) punishment without trial. Trial without punishment is a unique method of expressing condemnation without incarceration. "Expressivism has a broader basis than communication of punishment and sentencing," says Antony Duff. According to Drumbl, we can untangle our understanding of punishment from "the iconic preference for jailhouses" to include a larger spectrum of non-incarcerative measures like "recrimination, shame, consequence, and sanction." Non-incarcerative measures allow offenders to be punished without going through a formal criminal trial. This strategy denotes accountability for unlawful behavior. This research concludes that in many circumstances, prosecuting elderly war crimes suspects is difficult or unfeasible, but their age or illness should not be grounds for impunity. They should be accountable for their heinous activities through criminal trials or other mechanisms.

Keywords: international criminal law, international criminal punishment, international crimes tribunal, temporally distant international crimes

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82 Discrimination Faced by Dalit Women in India

Authors: Soundarya Lahari Vedula


Dalit women make up a significant portion of the Indian population. However, they are victims of age old discrimination. This paper presents a brief background of the Indian caste system which is a hierarchical division placing Dalits at the lowest rank. Dalits are forced to perform menial and harsh tasks. They often face social ostracism. The situation of Dalit women is of unique significance as they face triple discrimination due to their caste, gender, and class. Dalit women are strictly withheld by the rigid boundaries of the caste system. They are discriminated at every stage of their life and are denied access to public places, education and healthcare facilities among others. They face the worst forms of sexual violence. In spite of legislations and international conventions in place, their plight is not adequately addressed. This paper discusses, in brief, the legal mechanism in place to prohibit untouchability. Furthermore, this paper details on the specific human rights violations faced by Dalit women in the social, economic and political spheres. The violations range from discrimination in public places, denial of education and health services, sexual exploitation and barriers to political representation. Finally, this paper identifies certain lacunae in the existing Indian statutes and broadens on the measures to be taken to improve the situation of Dalit women. This paper offers some recommendations to address the plight of Dalit women such as amendments to the existing statutes, effective implementation of legal mechanisms and a more meaningful interpretation of the international conventions.

Keywords: Dalit, caste, class, discrimination, equality

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81 Analysis of the Best Interest of the Child Principle within a Marriage Law Framework: A Study of South Africa

Authors: Lizelle Ramaccio Calvino


Article 3 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Child states that 'The best interests of the child must be a top priority in all decisions and actions that affect children.' This stance is also echoed in terms of article 20 of the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child. South Africa, as a signatory of the aforesaid international and national conventions, constitutionalised the best interest of the child in terms of section 28(2) of the Republic of South Africa, 1996. Section 28(2) provides that '[A] child’s best interests are of paramount importance in every matter concerning the child.' The application of 'the best interests of the child' principle is consequently applicable in all fields of South African law, including matrimonial law. Two separate but equal Acts regulate civil marriages in South Africa, namely the Marriage Act 25 of 1961 and the Civil Union Act 17 of 2006. Customary marriages are regulated by the Recognition of Customary Marriages Act 120 of 1998. In terms of the Marriage Act and the Recognition of Customary Marriages Act, a minor may (provided he/she obtains the required consent) enter into a marriage. Despite the aforesaid, section 1 of the Civil Union Act categorically prohibits a minor from entering into a civil union. The article will first determine whether the ban of minors from entering into a civil union undermines the 'the best interests of the child' principle, and if so, whether it is in violation of the Constitution as well as international and national conventions. In addition, the article will critically analyse whether the application of the Marriage Act and the Civil Union Act (dual Acts) result in disparity within the South African marriage law framework, and if so, whether such discrepancy violates same-sex couples’ right (in particular a same-sex minor) to equality before the law and to have their dignity protected. The article intends, through the application of a qualitative research methodology and by way of a comparative analyses of international and domestic laws, consider whether a single well-defined structure such as the Dutch marriage law system would not be an improved alternative to address the existing paradox resulting from the application of an Act that undermines 'the best interest of the child' principle. Ultimately the article proposes recommendations for matrimonial law reform.

Keywords: best interests of the child, civil marriage, civil union, minor

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80 Recognition by the Voice and Speech Features of the Emotional State of Children by Adults and Automatically

Authors: Elena E. Lyakso, Olga V. Frolova, Yuri N. Matveev, Aleksey S. Grigorev, Alexander S. Nikolaev, Viktor A. Gorodnyi


The study of the children’s emotional sphere depending on age and psychoneurological state is of great importance for the design of educational programs for children and their social adaptation. Atypical development may be accompanied by violations or specificities of the emotional sphere. To study characteristics of the emotional state reflection in the voice and speech features of children, the perceptual study with the participation of adults and the automatic recognition of speech were conducted. Speech of children with typical development (TD), with Down syndrome (DS), and with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) aged 6-12 years was recorded. To obtain emotional speech in children, model situations were created, including a dialogue between the child and the experimenter containing questions that can cause various emotional states in the child and playing with a standard set of toys. The questions and toys were selected, taking into account the child’s age, developmental characteristics, and speech skills. For the perceptual experiment by adults, test sequences containing speech material of 30 children: TD, DS, and ASD were created. The listeners were 100 adults (age 19.3 ± 2.3 years). The listeners were tasked with determining the children’s emotional state as “comfort – neutral – discomfort” while listening to the test material. Spectrographic analysis of speech signals was conducted. For automatic recognition of the emotional state, 6594 speech files containing speech material of children were prepared. Automatic recognition of three states, “comfort – neutral – discomfort,” was performed using automatically extracted from the set of acoustic features - the Geneva Minimalistic Acoustic Parameter Set (GeMAPS) and the extended Geneva Minimalistic Acoustic Parameter Set (eGeMAPS). The results showed that the emotional state is worse determined by the speech of TD children (comfort – 58% of correct answers, discomfort – 56%). Listeners better recognized discomfort in children with ASD and DS (78% of answers) than comfort (70% and 67%, respectively, for children with DS and ASD). The neutral state is better recognized by the speech of children with ASD (67%) than by the speech of children with DS (52%) and TD children (54%). According to the automatic recognition data using the acoustic feature set GeMAPSv01b, the accuracy of automatic recognition of emotional states for children with ASD is 0.687; children with DS – 0.725; TD children – 0.641. When using the acoustic feature set eGeMAPSv01b, the accuracy of automatic recognition of emotional states for children with ASD is 0.671; children with DS – 0.717; TD children – 0.631. The use of different models showed similar results, with better recognition of emotional states by the speech of children with DS than by the speech of children with ASD. The state of comfort is automatically determined better by the speech of TD children (precision – 0.546) and children with ASD (0.523), discomfort – children with DS (0.504). The data on the specificities of recognition by adults of the children’s emotional state by their speech may be used in recruitment for working with children with atypical development. Automatic recognition data can be used to create alternative communication systems and automatic human-computer interfaces for social-emotional learning. Acknowledgment: This work was financially supported by the Russian Science Foundation (project 18-18-00063).

Keywords: autism spectrum disorders, automatic recognition of speech, child’s emotional speech, Down syndrome, perceptual experiment

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79 The Gaps of Environmental Criminal Liability in Armed Conflicts and Its Consequences: An Analysis under Stockholm, Geneva and Rome

Authors: Vivian Caroline Koerbel Dombrowski


Armed conflicts have always meant the ultimate expression of power and at the same time, lack of understanding among nations. Cities were destroyed, people were killed, assets were devastated. But these are not only the loss of a war: the environmental damage comes to be considered immeasurable losses in the short, medium and long term. And this is because no nation wants to bear that cost. They invest in military equipment, training, technical equipment but the environmental account yet finds gaps in international law. Considering such a generalization in rights protection, many nations are at imminent danger in a conflict if the water will be used as a mass weapon, especially if we consider important rivers such as Jordan, Euphrates and Nile. The top three international documents were analyzed on the subject: the Stockholm Convention (1972), Additional Protocol I to the Geneva Convention (1977) and the Rome Statute (1998). Indeed, some references are researched in doctrine, especially scientific articles, to substantiate with consistent data about the extent of the damage, historical factors and decisions which have been successful. However, due to the lack of literature about this subject, the research tends to be exhaustive. From the study of the indicated material, it was noted that international law - humanitarian and environmental - calls in some of its instruments the environmental protection in war conflicts, but they are generic and vague rules that do not define exactly what is the environmental damage , nor sets standards for measure them. Taking into account the mains conflicts of the century XX: World War II, the Vietnam War and the Gulf War, one must realize that the environmental consequences were of great rides - never deactivated landmines, buried nuclear weapons, armaments and munitions destroyed in the soil, chemical weapons, not to mention the effects of some weapons when used (uranium, agent Orange, etc). Extending the search for more recent conflicts such as Afghanistan, it is proven that the effects on health of the civilian population were catastrophic: cancer, birth defects, and deformities in newborns. There are few reports of nations that, somehow, repaired the damage caused to the environment as a result of the conflict. In the pitch of contemporary conflicts, many nations fear that water resources are used as weapons of mass destruction, because once contaminated - directly or indirectly - can become a means of disguised genocide side effect of military objective. In conclusion, it appears that the main international treaties governing the subject mention the concern for environmental protection, however leave the normative specifications vacancies necessary to effectively there is a prevention of environmental damage in armed conflict and, should they occur, the repair of the same. Still, it appears that there is no protection mechanism to safeguard natural resources and avoid them to become a mass destruction weapon.

Keywords: armed conflicts, criminal liability, environmental damages, humanitarian law, mass weapon

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78 Evaluating the Needs of PhD Students in Preparation of a Genre-Based English for Academic Purposes Course

Authors: Heba I. Bakry


Academic writing in the tertiary education has always been a challenge to EFL learners. This proposed study aims at investigating the academic English language needs for PhD students and candidates studying humanities and social sciences at Cairo University. The research problem arises from the fact that most of them study English as a Foreign Language (EFL) or for specific purposes (ESP) in their undergraduate years. They are hardly familiarized with the different academic genres, despite the fact that they use academic resources written in English, and they are required to publish a paper internationally. Upon understanding the conventions and constraints of academic writing, postgraduates will have the opportunity to interact with the international academic spheres conveniently. There is, thus, a need to be acquainted with the generally accepted features of the academic genres, such as academic papers and their part-genres, such as writing abstracts, in addition to other occluded genres, such as personal statements and recommendation letters. The lack of practicing many of these genres is caused by the fact that there are clear differences between the rhetoric and conventions of the students' native language, i.e., Arabic, and the target language they are learning in the academic context, i.e., English. Moreover, apart from the general culture represented ethno-linguistically, the learners' 'small' culture represented in a national setting like Cairo University is more defining than their general cultural affiliations that are associated with their nationality, race, or religion, for instance. The main research question of this proposed study is: What is the effect of teaching a genre-based EAP course on the research writing competence of PhD candidates? To reach an answer to this question, the study will attempt to answer the following sub-questions: 1. What are the Egyptian PhD candidates' EAP perceived needs? 2. What are the requisite academic research skills for Egyptian scholars? The study intends to assess the students’ needs, as a step to design and evaluate an EAP course that is based on explaining and scrutinizing a variety of academic genres. Adopting a diagnostic approach, the needs assessment uses quantitative data collected through questionnaires, and qualitative data assembled from semi-structured interviews with the students and their teachers, in addition to non-participant observations of a convenience sample.

Keywords: course design, English for academic purposes, genre-based, needs assessment

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77 Communication in the Sciences: A Discourse Analysis of Biology Research Articles and Magazine Articles

Authors: Gayani Ranawake


Effective communication is widely regarded as an important aspect of any discipline. This particular study deals with written communication in science. Writing conventions and linguistic choices play a key role in conveying the message effectively to a target audience. Scientists are responsible for conveying their findings or research results not only to their discourse community but also to the general public. Recognizing appropriate linguistic choices is crucial since they vary depending on the target audience. The majority of scientists can communicate effectively with their discourse community, but public engagement seems more challenging to them. There is a lack of research into the language use of scientists, and in particular how it varies by discipline and audience (genre). A better understanding of the different linguistic conventions used in effective science writing by scientists for scientists and by scientists for the public will help to guide scientists who are familiar with their discourse community norms to write effectively for the public. This study investigates the differences and similarities of linguistic choices in biology articles written by scientists for their discourse community and biology magazine articles written by scientists and science communicators for the general public. This study is a part of a larger project investigating linguistic differences in different genres of science academic writing. The sample for this particular study is composed of 20 research articles from the journal Biological Reviews and 20 magazine articles from the magazine Australian Popular Science. Differences in the linguistic devices were analyzed using Hyland’s metadiscourse model for academic writing proposed in 2005. The frequency of the usage of interactive resources (transitions, frame markers, endophoric markers, evidentials and code glosses) and interactional resources (hedges, boosters, attitude markers, self-mentions and engagement markers) were compared and contrasted using the NVivo textual analysis tool. The results clearly show the differences in the frequency of usage of interactional and interactive resources in the two disciplines under investigation. The findings of this study provide a reference guide for scientists and science writers to understand the differences in the linguistic choices between the two genres. This will be particularly helpful for scientists who are proficient at writing for their discourse community, but not for the public.

Keywords: discourse analysis, linguistic choices, metadiscourse, science writing

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76 Discourse Analysis of the Perception of ‘Safety’ in EU and Refugee Law

Authors: Klaudia Krogulec


The concept and the meaning of safety is largely undermined in International and EU refugee law. While the Geneva Convention 1951 concentrates mainly on the principle of non-refoulment (no-return) and the idea of physical safety of refugees, countries continue to implement harmful readmission agreements that presume ‘safe countries’ for the hosting and return of the refugees. This research intends to use discourse analysis of the legal provisions and interviews with Syrian refugees, NGO workers, and refugee lawyers in Tukey to understand what ‘safety’ actually means and how law shapes the experiences of Syrians in Turkey (the country that hosts the largest population of Syrians and is a key partner of the EU-Turkey Agreement 2016). The preliminary findings reveal the competing meanings of safety (rights-based vs state interests approach). As the refugee policies continue to prioritize state interests/safety over human safety and human rights, it is extremely important to provide recommendations on how ‘safety’ should be defined in the refugee law in the future.

Keywords: human rights law, refugee law, human safety, EU-turkey agreement

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75 Comics as an Intermediary for Media Literacy Education

Authors: Ryan C. Zlomek


The value of using comics in the literacy classroom has been explored since the 1930s. At that point in time researchers had begun to implement comics into daily lesson plans and, in some instances, had started the development process for comics-supported curriculum. In the mid-1950s, this type of research was cut short due to the work of psychiatrist Frederic Wertham whose research seemingly discovered a correlation between comic readership and juvenile delinquency. Since Wertham’s allegations the comics medium has had a hard time finding its way back to education. Now, over fifty years later, the definition of literacy is in mid-transition as the world has become more visually-oriented and students require the ability to interpret images as often as words. Through this transition, comics has found a place in the field of literacy education research as the shift focuses from traditional print to multimodal and media literacies. Comics are now believed to be an effective resource in bridging the gap between these different types of literacies. This paper seeks to better understand what students learn from the process of reading comics and how those skills line up with the core principles of media literacy education in the United States. In the first section, comics are defined to determine the exact medium that is being examined. The different conventions that the medium utilizes are also discussed. In the second section, the comics reading process is explored through a dissection of the ways a reader interacts with the page, panel, gutter, and different comic conventions found within a traditional graphic narrative. The concepts of intersubjective acts and visualization are attributed to the comics reading process as readers draw in real world knowledge to decode meaning. In the next section, the learning processes that comics encourage are explored parallel to the core principles of media literacy education. Each principle is explained and the extent to which comics can act as an intermediary for this type of education is theorized. In the final section, the author examines comics use in his computer science and technology classroom. He lays out different theories he utilizes from Scott McCloud’s text Understanding Comics and how he uses them to break down media literacy strategies with his students. The article concludes with examples of how comics has positively impacted classrooms around the United States. It is stated that integrating comics into the classroom will not solve all issues related to literacy education but, rather, that comics can be a powerful multimodal resource for educators looking for new mediums to explore with their students.

Keywords: comics, graphics novels, mass communication, media literacy, metacognition

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74 Thinking Differently about Diversity: A Literature Review

Authors: Natalie Rinfret, Francine Tougas, Ann Beaton


Conventions No. 100 and 111 of the International Labor Organization, passed in 1951 and 1958 respectively, established the principles of equal pay for men and women for work of equal value and freedom from discrimination in employment. Governments of different countries followed suit. For example, in 1964, the Civil Rights Act was passed in the United States and in 1972, Canada ratified Convention 100. Thus, laws were enacted and programs were implemented to combat discrimination in the workplace and, over time, more than 90% of the member countries of the International Labour Organization have ratified these conventions by implementing programs such as employment equity in Canada aimed at groups recognized as being discriminated against in the labor market, including women. Although legislation has been in place for several decades, employment discrimination has not gone away. In this study, we pay particular attention to the hidden side of the effects of employment discrimination. This is the emergence of subtle forms of discrimination that often fly under the radar but nevertheless, have adverse effects on the attitudes and behaviors of members of targeted groups. Researchers have identified two forms of racial and gender bias. On the one hand, there are traditional prejudices referring to beliefs about the inferiority and innate differences of women and racial minorities compared to White men. They have the effect of confining these two groups to job categories suited to their perceived limited abilities and can result in degrading, if not violent and hateful, language and actions. On the other hand, more subtle prejudices are more suited to current social norms. However, this subtlety harbors a conflict between values of equality and remnants of negative beliefs and feelings toward women and racial minorities. Our literature review also takes into account an overlooked part of the groups targeted by the programs in place, senior workers, and highlights the quantifiable and observable effects of prejudice and discriminatory behaviors in employment. The study proposes a hybrid model of interventions, taking into account the organizational system (employment equity practices), discriminatory attitudes and behaviors, and the type of leadership to be advocated. This hybrid model includes, in the first instance, the implementation of initiatives aimed at both promoting employment equity and combating discrimination and, in the second instance, the establishment of practices that foster inclusion, the full and complete participation of all, including seniors, in the mission of their organization.

Keywords: employment discrimination, gender bias, the hybrid model of interventions, senior workers

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73 Labor Welfare and Social Security

Authors: Shoaib Alvi


Mahatma Gandhi was said “Man becomes great exactly in the degree in which he works for the welfare of his fellow-men”. Labor welfare is an important fact of Industrial relations. With the growth of industrialization, mechanization and computerization, labor welfare measures have got the fillip. The author believes that Labor welfare includes provisions of various facilities and amenities in and around the work place for the better life of the workers. Labor welfare is, thus, one of the major determinants of industrial relations. It comprises all human efforts the work place for the better life of the worker. The social and economic aspects of the life of the workers have the direct influence on the social and economic development of the nation. Author thinks that there could be multiple objectives in having, labor welfare programme the concern for improving the lot of the workers, a philosophy of humanitarianism or internal social responsibility, a feeling of concern, and caring by providing some of life's basic amenities, besides the basic pay packet. Such caring is supposed to build a sense of loyalty on the part of the employee towards the organization. The author thinks that Social security is the security that the State furnishes against the risks which an individual of small means cannot today, stand up to by himself even in private combination with his fellows. Social security is one of the pillars on which the structure of a welfare state rests, and it constitutes the hardcore of social policy in most countries. It is through social security measures that the state attempts to maintain every citizen at a certain prescribed level below which no one is allowed to fall. According to author, social assistance is a method according to which benefits are given to the needy persons, fulfilling the prescribed conditions, by the government out of its own resources. Author has analyzed and studied the relationship between the labor welfare social security and also studied various international conventions on provisions of social security by International Authorities like United Nations, International Labor Organization, and European Union etc. Author has also studied and analyzed concept of labor welfare and social security schemes of many countries around the globe ex:- Social security in Australia, Social security in Switzerland, Social Security (United States), Mexican Social Security Institute, Welfare in Germany, Social security schemes of India for labor welfare in both organized sector and unorganized sector. In this Research paper, Author has done the study on the Conceptual framework of the Labour Welfare. According to author, labors are highly perishable, which need constant welfare measures for their upgradation and performance in this field. At last author has studied role of trade unions and labor welfare unions and other institutions working for labor welfare, in this research paper author has also identified problems these Unions and labor welfare bodies’ face and tried to find out solutions for the problems and also analyzed various steps taken by the government of various countries around the globe.

Keywords: labor welfare, internal social responsibility, social security, international conventions

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72 A Case Study on Quantitatively and Qualitatively Increasing Student Output by Using Available Word Processing Applications to Teach Reluctant Elementary School-Age Writers

Authors: Vivienne Cameron


Background: Between 2010 and 2017, teachers in a suburban public school district struggled to get students to consistently produce adequate writing samples as measured by the Pennsylvania state writing rubric for measuring focus, content, organization, style, and conventions. A common thread in all of the data was the need to develop stamina in the student writers. Method: All of the teachers used the traditional writing process model (prewrite, draft, revise, edit, final copy) during writing instruction. One teacher taught the writing process using word processing and incentivizing with publication instead of the traditional pencil/paper/grading method. Students did not have instruction in typing/keyboarding. The teacher submitted resulting student work to real-life contests, magazines, and publishers. Results: Students in the test group increased both the quantity and quality of their writing over a seven month period as measured by the Pennsylvania state writing rubric. Reluctant writers, as well as students with autism spectrum disorder, benefited from this approach. This outcome was repeated consistently over a five-year period. Interpretation: Removing the burden of pencil and paper allowed students to participate in the writing process more fully. Writing with pencil and paper is physically tiring. Students are discouraged when they submit a draft and are instructed to use the Add, Remove, Move, Substitute (ARMS) method to revise their papers. Each successive version becomes shorter. Allowing students to type their papers frees them to quickly and easily make changes. The result is longer writing pieces in shorter time frames, allowing the teacher to spend more time working on individual needs. With this additional time, the teacher can concentrate on teaching focus, content, organization, style, conventions, and audience. S/he also has a larger body of works from which to work on whole group instruction such as developing effective leads. The teacher submitted the resulting student work to contests, magazines, and publishers. Although time-consuming, the submission process was an invaluable lesson for teaching about audience and tone. All students in the test sample had work accepted for publication. Students became highly motivated to succeed when their work was accepted for publication. This motivation applied to special needs students, regular education students, and gifted students.

Keywords: elementary-age students, reluctant writers, teaching strategies, writing process

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71 Passport Confiscation as a Violation of Human Rights: Analysing the Kafala System

Authors: Samantha Vargas-Alfonso


The phenomenon of migration has been long-recorded since ancient history but never has mobility in huge numbers been so rapid and constant than that of the present. A significant portion of these migrants move for the promise of better economic subsistence by finding employment in foreign lands; while there are local and international instruments to protect these migrant workers, they still face human rights violations amongst other hurdles in integrating themselves into their host country. This research aims to look at the occurrence of Passport Confiscation for Filipino migrant workers (blue-collar workers) who are situated in Saudi Arabia. In addition to this, the study will look at the Kafala System which GCC countries practice regulating their foreign employees. The research attempts to prove that international conventions lack power in constraining the occurrence of passport confiscation and that while the kafala system exists, there is very little opportunity to address this issue.

Keywords: kafala, labor, migration, passport

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70 The Next Game Changer: 3-D Printed Musical Instruments

Authors: Leonardo Ko


In an era marked by rapid technological innovation, the classical instrument industry nonetheless has not seen significant change. Is this a matter of stubborn traditionalism, or do old, conventional instruments really sound better? Because of the widespread use of 3-D printing, it seems feasible to produce modern, 3-D printed instruments that adhere to the basic conventions of standard construction. This study aimed to design and create a practical, effective 3-D printed acoustic violin. A cost-benefit analysis of materials and design is presented in addition to a report on sound tests in which a pool of professional musicians compared the traditional violin to its synthetic counterpart with regard to acoustic properties. With a low-cost yet functional instrument, musicians of all levels would be able to afford instruments with much greater ease; the present study thus hopes to contribute to efforts to increase the accessibility of classical music education.

Keywords: acoustic musical instrument, classical musical education, low-cost, 3-D printing

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69 Civil Nuclear Liability Indian Perspective

Authors: Shivani Gupta, Shrishti Chaturvedi


By using a miniscule of nuclear matter, the problem of immeasurable human needs for energy can be resolved. However since nuclear energy also has the inherent potential for catastrophic destruction, one should be extremely mindful of the consequences should a mischance occur. Civil Nuclear Liability has recently gained a lot of momentum after India entered into agreements with nations like United States of America, France and others. Also now India is a part of the Convention on Supplementary Compensation (CSC). With a history of Bhopal Gas Tragedy, India is now much more vigilant about the latest developments in this sector. Therefore, it has become imperative to analyses the liability regime in the background of international conventions such as Vienna Convention 1963, Paris Convention 1960, Convention on Supplementary Compensation, 1997 and others. Also the present Indian legal scenarios in this regard which are derived from Civil Liability for Nuclear Damages Act, 2010 and Civil Liability for Nuclear Damages Rules, 2011 have also been extensively discussed in the paper.

Keywords: nuclear liability, civil liability for nuclear damages act, 2010, civil liability for nuclear damages rules, India

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