Mark Drakeford’s men-only curfew would break international law

Politicians, including Baroness Jones of the Green Party and Mark Drakeford, who is the Labour leader in Wales, have spoken of the possibility of a 6pm curfew for men. That looks to be a breach of international law and so is something often referred to as illegal. A curfew is a punishment. A curfew directed at any of us on the basis of gender/sex (or any characteristic protected from discrimination) is a collective punishment of those who have that characteristic. Or as Oxford Public International Law terms it: ‘A collective punishment is a form of sanction imposed on persons or a group of persons in response to a crime committed

Dutch descend into curfew chaos

Police were ready and supermarkets closed their doors, but on Tuesday evening it was unclear if a controversial curfew in the Netherlands would be respected. Earlier in the day, a court ruled that the legal basis for the curfew was invalid: it rests on a particular type of emergency ruling when instead it should have gone to a vote in the lower house. This was, ruled the court in the Hague, ‘absolutely not’ the kind of situation for which the emergency law was intended, such as the breach of a dyke. Meanwhile, the court said the 9 p.m. to 4.30 a.m. curfew, which sparked nationwide hooliganism and riots after it was introduced

Will Spain’s nation of rogues comply with the curfew?

A few years ago, when I was in the queue to catch a plane, a Spanish lady caught me watching her as she surreptitiously removed a sticker from her hand luggage, which meant it would have been stored in the hold. ‘Los españoles somos muy pícaros’ (we Spaniards are real rogues) she told me with a smile of complicity and a rueful shake of the head. Spaniards sometimes point out with a touch of pride that it was their country which pioneered the picaresque novel – a literary genre which tells the story of an ingenious rascal who lives by his wits, sometimes on the wrong side of the law.