Mauritian lawyer, named in controversial drug trafficking report, wins case to expunge findings

The controversial report of an official inquiry into drug trafficking in Mauritius continues to cause waves in that state’s upper echelons. When it appeared in 2018, the report led to the resignation of the minister for gender equality as well as the deputy speaker in the national assembly. Both said they would contest the report, particularly its suggestion that they were implicated in drug scandals.

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UK hold on Chagos archipelago declared unlawful

Most inland countries would ignore decisions of the world’s maritime court, the International Tribune for the Law of the Sea (Itlos). But this decision is different. It sheds important light on one of the few places in the world still regarded by many (including the United Nations) as a colony that should be returned to its original people. This time the ‘colony’ is the Chagos Archipelago – a group of islands and atolls in the Indian Ocean. Mauritius says the islands are a part of its territory. But the UK denies this.

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Put simply, Mauritius wants the Chagos Archipelago back. Several thousand people from these islands were removed by the UK between 1968 and 1974 to make way for a UK and US military base. Now Mauritius says these people and their descendants want to go home, and Mauritius sees itself as the legitimate governing authority of the group of islands.

Shock "advice" by International Court of Justice on another forgotten African colony

For tourists and investors, particularly those from South Africa, Mauritius is often seen as a quiet paradise, politically stable and a model of both democracy and humane economic development. Now, thanks to a new advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice, Mauritius – geographically part of Africa – has also been placed right at the forefront of an international political row that has its origins in the period of high colonialism and that involves the USA and its crucial defence strategies, the UK and the United Nations. The bottom line?

It must be a long time since the UK had such a telling off from an international court. The “advisory” (link to PDF) from the International Court of Justice pulled no punches and some of the documents related to the colonial-style acquiring of the Chagos islands, discussed by the court, must have been highly embarrassing to the UK when they were first made public.

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