Arbitrating for peace
On 20 January 2017, the SCC hosted the symposium Arbitrating for Peace - a high-level discussion focusing on successful peaceful dispute resolution. The starting point of the symposium was the success of commonly agreed principles of disputes resolution known as international arbitration, and the power of shared objectives for the greater good. The book, also titled Arbitration for Peace, was officially released during the centennial symposium and tells how arbitration has made a difference throughout history.
The United Nations has been a strong driving force in carving out the fundamentals of international arbitration. The New York Convention adopted by the UN General Assembly in 1958, safeguarding the enforcement of international arbitral awards, was early on described by members of the international community as “a constructive step towards facilitating international trade, and ultimately towards higher standards of living and so towards general peace and prosperity”.
Panel members were Dr. Nabil Elaraby (Egypt), Former Secretary General of the League of the Arab States; Ms. Lisa J. Grosh (United States), Assistant Legal Adviser at the US State Department; Dr. Mojtaba Kazazi (Iran), Former Head of the United Nations Compensation Commission (UNCC); and Judge Abdulqawi A. Yusuf (Somalia), Vice President of the International Court of Justice.
Moderated by Prof. Ove Bring (Sweden), the panel discussed past examples of peaceful dispute resolution through arbitration, and analyzed expectations for the future. The discussion also touched upon the challenges for international arbitration, and other options for using legal norms to achieve sustainable peaceful resolutions of disputes.
Using examples from the book Arbitrating for Peace, Prof. Dr. Maxi Scherer of Queen Mary University presented an overview of different situations and disputes where arbitration contributed to constructive and peaceful resolution.
Ambassador Marie Jacobsson introduced the Swedish Women’s Mediation Network – a new dispute resolution initiative by the Swedish government.
Dr. Nabil Elaraby (Egypt), gave a first-hand account of the Taba Arbitration between Israel and Egypt, and Dr. Mojtaba Kazazi (Iran) shared his experiences from the Iran-United States Claims Tribunal. The two case studies were introduced by Ms. Kirsten Teo-Delalay (Singapore/Switzerland) and Ms. Veranika Buracheuskaya (Belarus/Russia), both students in Stockholm University’s Masters program in International Commercial Arbitration Law.
The book Arbitrating for Peace was officially released during the centennial symposium. It places arbitration in a wider historical context, thereby making the subject accessible beyond the narrow circle of specialists without losing its legal relevance. The idea and concept of the book was initiated by the SCC, and it is published by Wolters Kluwer.
The Nobel Peace Prize laureate, and Secretary-General of the United Nations between 1997 and 2006, Kofi Annan, writes in the foreword:
“Peaceful resolution of disputes rarely makes the headlines. The use of the rule of law in pursuit of peace often takes place quietly, far away from the limelight. The heroes involved; the men and women who make substantial contributions and advance peace in their capacities as brave political leaders, engaged legal specialists and wise adjudicators of integrity, receive little praise in international media. Their success remains relatively unknown.”
Read the full foreword by Kofi Annan
The book contributes to a continued dynamic development of dispute resolution in complicated or sensitive geopolitical contexts, and demonstrates how arbitration has and can continue to play an important role for international relations. Each chapter is devoted to different international landmark arbitration cases – primarily state-to-state but also including commercial disputes with geopolitical dimensions – and represents how arbitration has resolved disputes in cases regarding for example potential escalation of armed conflict, investor-state relations, expropriation of foreign companies, environmental issues, and migrants’ access and protection, and more.
Editors and Contributors
Arbitrating for Peace is published by Wolters Kluwer, and has been edited by Ulf Franke, Annette Magnusson and Joel Dahlquist.
Foreword by Kofi Annan
Introduction by Stephen M. Schwebel
CHAPTER 1: The Alabama Claims Arbitration: Statecraft and Stagecraft.
CHAPTER 2: The Asser Arbitration.
CHAPTER 3: Arbitrating Russian Concession Contracts: The Lena Goldfields Case.
Sergei N. Lebedev & Natalia G. Doronina
CHAPTER 4: The Trail Smelter Dispute.
Andrea J. Menaker
CHAPTER 5: The Rann of Kutch Arbitration.
Robert G. Volterra
CHAPTER 6: The Iran-United States Claims Tribunal: A Unique Example of Arbitrating for Peace.
CHAPTER 7: The Legacy of the Aminoil Award.
Ahmed S. El-Kosheri
CHAPTER 8: Arbitrating in Stockholm during the Cold War: The US Embassy in Moscow.
CHAPTER 9: Arbitrating for Peace in the Middle East: The Taba Award.
David W. Rivkin
CHAPTER 10: The Rainbow Warrior Affair: Thirty Years After.
CHAPTER 11: The Brcko Arbitration.
R. Jade Harry
CHAPTER 12: Asian Agricultural Products Limited v. Sri Lanka: Twenty-Five Years Later
Meg Kinnear & Francisco Grob
CHAPTER 13: RosUkrEnergo versus Naftogaz of Ukraine
CHAPTER 14: The Abyei Arbitration: A Model for Peaceful Resolution of Disputes Involving Non-state Actors