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Showing posts from December 15, 2013

Maid in Manhattan: A migration project

Saturday, 21 December 2013 | Ashok Malik | in Edit Indian diplomat Devyani Khobragade, accused of violating US labour laws, seems to be the victim herself, entrapped by her domestic help on the one hand and an over-ambitious district attorney on the other Why did the Devyani Khobragade case blow up into a diplomatic crisis? Three factors have to be kept in mind. First, Ms Khobragade's arrest has so angered the Indian system because there is genuine belief in the Ministry of External Affairs that she did no wrong. She is not guilty of any individual crime. If she used a short-cut — and one a clever lawyer can defend in court — it was with the approbation of both countries. Contrary to media reports, Ms Khobragade's contract with her housekeeper, Sangeeta Richard, does not promise her a composite sum of US $4,500 a month or anything of the sort. It promises an hourly wage — "minimum

International law only for weaker states?

Brahma Chellaney The harsh truth is that the U.S. interprets the 1963 Vienna Convention on Consular Relations restrictively at home but liberally overseas so as to shield even the spies and contractors it sends On the face of it, there is nothing in common between China's declaration on November 23 this year of an air defence identification zone (ADIZ) extending to territories it does not control and America's arrest, strip search and handcuffing of a New York-based Indian woman diplomat on December 12 for allegedly underpaying a domestic help she had brought with her from India. In truth, these actions epitomise the unilateralist approach of these powers. A just, rules-based international order has long been touted by powerful states as essential for international peace and security. But there is a long history of major powers using international law against other states but