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Cuba/United States: Agreement on Oil Spill Preparedness

(Jan. 17, 2017) On January 9, 2017, it was announced that authorities from the United States and Cuba had signed an agreement covering matters related to preparedness for and responses to incidents of hazardous substance pollution and oil spills in the Straits of Florida and the Gulf of Mexico. (Press Release, United States and Cuba […]

France: State of Emergency Extended to July 2017

(Dec. 29, 2016) On December 15, 2016, the French Parliament adopted legislation extending the “state of emergency” to July 15, 2017. (Loi n° 2016-1767 du 19 décembre 2016 prorogeant l’application de la loi n° 55-385 du 3 avril 1955 relative à l’état d’urgence (1) [Law No. 2016-1767 of 19 December 2016 Extending the Application of […]

Germany: Government Publishes Civil Defense Concept

(Sept. 9, 2016) On August 28, 2016, the German Federal Government published a Civil Defense Concept in which it set out a federal strategy to facilitate non-military defense measures in Germany in a national emergency such as an attack against the country or a natural disaster. (Bundesministerium des Innern [Federal Ministry of the Interior], Konzeption […]

Japan: Active Volcanoes Special Measures Act Amended

(Sept. 11, 2015) In September 2014, Mt. Ontake, located in central Japan, erupted and resulted in the loss of 57 lives. (Mount Ontake Volcanic Eruption, NHK World (Oct. 27, 2014).) Experts called for improved measures for managing government reactions to eruptions. (Id.) In response, the government discussed enhanced countermeasures. (Disaster Management in Japan, Cabinet Office […]

Portugal: Government Establishes Inter-Ministerial Coordination Commission on Ebola

(Oct. 28, 2014) On October 23, 2014, the Portuguese Council of Ministers approved the creation of a commission designed to coordinate the responses to and political decisions on the ebola virus, among all sectors of government. The Inter-Ministerial Commission on the Coordination of the Response to Ebola, headed by the Ministry of Health, will comprise […]

Liberia: Army Orders Border Crossers from Sierra Leone Shot Due to Fear of Ebola

(Aug. 22, 2014) On August 15, 2014, Colonel Eric W. Dennis, Deputy Chief of Staff of Liberia’s armed forces, directed soldiers on the border in two counties in the western part of the country to shoot at anyone trying to enter from Sierra Leone. This move comes as a result of the Ebola epidemic; the […]

Canada; Mexico; United States: Agreement on Health Emergencies

(July 2, 2014) Health authorities from Mexico, the United States, and Canada recently announced that they have reached an agreement on a Declaration of Intent that sets forth guidelines and principles concerning how these countries will exchange public information during health emergencies of common interest. (Press Release, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), […]

Italy: New Measures to Respond to Environmental Emergencies

(Feb. 14, 2014) Italy’s Senate adopted a decree on “Urgent Measures Designed to Tackle Environmental and Industrial Emergencies and to Facilitate the Development of the Concerned Areas,” on February 5, 2014. (Legislative Decree No. 136 [hereinafter the Decree] (Dec. 10, 2013), NORMATTIVA.) The Decree aims to address the current environmental emergencies in the regions of […]