Andrew Tettenborn

Andrew Tettenborn is a professor of law at Swansea Law School

Cosying up to the EU would do Britain more harm than good

If anyone thought our relations with the EU since the Brexit referendum would be a respectful dialogue of equals, they were quickly disabused. Relations remain, to use an understatement, strained. Three national opposition parties have all chosen to weaponise this unpleasantness, and call for re-engagement with at least some EU institutions. Before you follow them

Why the EU is cracking down on Hungary’s migrant policy

We are set for another high-profile tussle between Budapest and Brussels. Yesterday the EU Court of Justice chose to impose a whopping €200 million fine on the Hungarian government for failing to apply EU asylum laws, a fine that increases by €1 million for every day the infringement continues.   Politics is never very far from the surface

Sunak’s crime crackdown won’t pay off for the Tories

The Tories are pledging to reshape our homicide laws if they win re-election. There could, as in many US states, be first-degree murder for intentional killing, second-degree murder for manslaughter because of diminished responsibility or death arising from a deliberate wrong. Rishi Sunak is also promising to get tough on domestic abuse, with a minimum

Cracking down on the ECHR won’t save Sunak

Rishi Sunak’s unequivocal statement this week about sex and the Equality Act was a clever piece of electioneering. Subsequent reports suggesting that the Tories planned to harden their stance on the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), by contrast, had the air of a measure taken in sheer panic. Regrettably, this will be obvious to

Fewer kids should go to university

Rishi Sunak said on Tuesday what many of us have quietly suspected for some time. As a nation, we have too few apprentices and too many university students. Why not, he said, look hard at the higher education courses we provide at public expense, and where we see high drop-out rates, or poor employment and

Is the West being hypocritical about Georgia’s foreign agents law?

The Georgian parliament has rammed through its new foreign agents law amid massive protests, overriding the veto of pro-western and pro-EU president Salome Zourabichvili. The new law essentially will require all non-commercial organisations operating in Georgia to register as foreign agents and publicise themselves as such if they receive over 20 per cent of their

Judges are empowering Just Stop Oil

It has been argued that the preparedness of the courts to declare governmental action unlawful is vital to the rule of law. Well, up to a point, Lord Copper. Yesterday’s High Court decision which annulled new police powers to control protests shows that there might be two sides to this, especially when you find yourself on the school run behind a deliberately

Press freedom means protecting Julian Assange

James Cleverly won’t be able to move the Julian Assange file out of his inbox quite yet after all. The High Court has allowed Assange to appeal once more against extradition to the US on the basis that no sufficient assurances have been received over his ability to rely on the First Amendment if tried

Stay-at-home parents don’t need free nursery places

Except for households blessed with rather generous incomes, most mothers these days have to work to keep a family decently fed and housed. Some kind of subsidised childcare is therefore an unfortunate necessity. The government recognises this, and has just introduced a new scheme. When fully up and running, it will give parents working full-time

Do we need a Sikh court?

Last week in Lincoln’s Inn Hall, nearly 50 prominent Sikhs gathered to mark the formation of the world’s first specifically Sikh court. When the body opens for business on 1 June, its members will be available essentially to do two things. They can provide what the lawyers call Alternative Dispute Resolution, helping to settle family and community

UNRWA hasn’t earned our trust in Gaza

Before 7 October last year, observers had long suspected an uncomfortable symbiosis between UNRWA, the UN organisation tasked with organising aid to the unfortunate Palestinians of the Gaza Strip, and the autocratic Hamas government in control in Gaza city. The attack on Israel on that day certainly didn’t dispel these suspicions, and in January this

The courts can’t solve climate change

It was always a racing certainty that this week’s ‘Swiss grannies’ climate change judgment in Strasbourg would spawn a new wave of environmental lawfare and give new life to that already in progress. A taste of the brave new future duly came from the High Court in London yesterday. Section 58 of the Climate Change Act requires

Is climate change really a human rights matter?

The media and the middle class may love net zero. Unfortunately, it is increasingly clear that voters are less keen. Predictably then, activists have been trying to take as much power as possible away from elected representatives, transferring it instead to international courts and judges. This morning, this programme of lawfare scored a major success in the

Civil servants can’t down tools if they don’t like Israel

Britain in the nineteenth century pioneered the idea of the professional, impartial civil service independent of politics. In the twenty-first, that same civil service is unfortunately pioneering the notion of a body increasingly independent of the state that employs it, and apt at times to follow its own remarkably political agenda without much control from

Barristers should be allowed to join the Garrick

The Garrick Club affair has taken a new and slightly worrying twist, this time courtesy of – of all bodies – the Bar Council. Hot on the heels of calls for judges to resign en masse from the club because it remains single-sex, the Council now apparently wants to go even further. It is hinting that

Why the WHO’s pandemic planning poses a threat to Britain

The fall-out from Covid continues. Its latest manifestations on the international stage are a draft pandemic preparedness treaty, soon to be formally published and opened for signature by the WHO, and an upcoming vote on proposals to amend the organisation’s International Health Regulations 2005 (IHR). The latter is a set of internationally binding rules for

UCL is harming itself by pandering to China

We have suspected for some time that UK universities were supping with the devil when they relied on legions of foreign, especially Chinese, students to balance the books. Last week the mask slipped spectacularly at University College London.  Some months ago a Chinese student complained of ‘horrible provocation’ when Michelle Shipworth, an associate professor dealing with human