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Comenius University, the oldest university in the Slovak Republic.

Exeter academic speaks at international law conference in Slovakia

On 27 September 2017, Dr Kubo Mačák spoke at an international conference with the theme “Cyber Security: New Challenges” in Bratislava. The conference was organised by the Department of International Law and International Relations at the Comenius University, the oldest university in the Slovak Republic.

The conference brought together experts on international law and cyber security from several European countries. The day began with a discussion of the development of international legal regulation of the cyber domain and the challenges that cyberspace poses for sovereignty, due diligence, and the law of armed conflict. It then moved on to consider the lawfulness of cyber espionage under international law. Further contributions focussed on the desirability of codification of international cyber law and actual operational practice of intelligence services in the cyber domain.

Dr Mačák spoke on the influence of the development of the cyber law of armed conflict on general international law. In part, he argued that a systemic shift has taken place, with the regulatory focus moving from the law of armed conflict to general international law. He discussed how this trend has allowed for specific concepts like the so-called functionality test to migrate from the law of armed conflict to other areas of international law. In closing, he cautioned that the unique teleological underpinning of the law of armed conflict must be taken into account before its rules or principles can be transplanted into other normative contexts.

Dr Mačák’s contribution was prepared in the context of the project “The Impact of the Law of Armed Conflict on General International Law”, developed and implemented in collaboration with the University of Reading (more information).

Date: 29 September 2017

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