Co-published by Oxford University Press and the International Law Institute, and prepared by the Office of the Legal Adviser at the Department of State, the Digest of United States Practice in International Law presents an annual compilation of documents and commentary highlighting significant developments in public and private international law, and is an invaluable resource for practitioners and scholars in the field.
Each year's volume compiles excerpts from documents such as treaties, diplomatic notes and correspondence, legal opinion letters, judicial decisions, Senate committee reports and press releases. Each document is selected by members of the Legal Adviser's Office of the U.S. Department of State, based on their judgments about the significance of the issues, their potential relevance to future situations, and their likely interest to scholars and practitioners. In almost every case, the commentary to each excerpt is accompanied by a citation to the full text.
Featured in the 2008 Digest are excerpts from and discussion of numerous documents relating to issues of current interest, including the following:
* Department of Justice position on trial and conviction within the U.S. of the son of former Liberian president Charles Taylor, for torture (Chapter 3, "International Criminal Law").
* The U.S.-Libya Claims Settlement Agreement, including the Libyan Claims Resolution Act (enacted August 4, 2008) (Chapter 8, "International Claims and State Responsibility").
* Recognition of Kosovo as a sovereign state and establishment of diplomatic relations with Kosovo (Chapter 9, "Diplomatic Relations, Succession, and Continuity of States").
* Decisions in arbitration regarding the softwood lumber dispute with Canada (Chapter 11, "Trade, Commercial Relations, Investment, and Transportation").
* Statements and speeches of U.S. officials on climate change made at international climate change conferences (Chapter 13, "Environment and Other Transnational Scientific Issues").
* Executive Orders imposing sanctions on Burma, Syria, and Zimbabwe (Chapter 16, "Sanctions").
* U.S. positions on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict as well as peace efforts in Lebanon, Somalia, and Sudan (Chapter 17, "International Conflict Resolution and Avoidance").
* U.S. statements on the Russia-Georgia conflict and other instances of international armed conflict (Chapter 18, "Use of Force, Arms Control and Disarmament, and Nonproliferation").
* U.S. positions on discussions of a possible Protocol to the Convention on Conventional Weapons relating to cluster munitions, and U.S. opposition to a separate Convention on Cluster Munitions (Chapter 18, "Use of Force, Arms Control and Disarmament, and Nonproliferation").
* U.S. federal court decisions on current and former Guantanamo detainees (Boumediene v. Bush, Parhat v. Gates, Gates v. Bismullah, Rasul v. Myers, and In re Guantanamo Bay Detainee Litigation (pertaining to enemy combatant status of Uighur detainees)), military commissions (United States v. Hamdan), detainees held in the United States (Al-Marri v. Pucciarelli), and detainees held by the Multinational Force in Iraq (Munaf v. Geren) (Chapter 18, "Use of Force, Arms Control and Disarmament, and Nonproliferation").
* UN Security Council Resolution and U.S. position on piracy in Somalia (Chapter 18, "Use of Force, Arms Control and Disarmament, and Nonproliferation").
* U.S. positions on nuclear nonproliferation-related issues, including issues relating to North Korea, Iran, Syria, Russia, and India (Chapter 18, "Use of Force, Arms Control and Disarmament, and Nonproliferation").