Diminishing Space for the International Criminal Court

From recent events around the global the continued efficacy of the ICC as a global court of last resort is seemingly under threat. The loud silence of the prosecutor new armed conflicts emerge and the old conflicts take new dimensions heightens the question regarding the continued viability of the court. Continue reading

Stepping Forward Into the Past

The African Union has had a draft resolution that will merge the current continental judicial bodies- the African Court on Human and Peoples’ Rights and the African Court of Justice and Human Rights- into one judicial body- African Court of Justice and Human and Peoples’ Rights. Part of the resolution proposes that the new court should have an enhanced criminal jurisdiction over war crimes, crimes against humanity and acts of genocide on the continent. Without getting into the merits or demerits of such a step, the sting is in the tail of additional proposed changes. Continue reading

Early Release in International Criminal Law

Written by: Jonathan Choi

The drama of international criminal justice is mostly in the initial conviction and sentencing; few reporters investigate what happens to the convict after she is locked away, and few academics consider why or how she is released. Continue reading

“Equality of Arms” and its Effect on the Quality of Justice at the ICC

Written by: Tosin Osasona [1]

The concept of equality of arms has a dinstinctive European origin and can be traced back to the medieval era, when dispute was settled by ordeal of trial by battle. Because the trial would be to death, a rigid set of rules were put in place to ensure parity between contestants and each contestant was put at par in terms of armament and armor.[2] This worldview midwived the common law system of adversarial proceeding. Continue reading

Prosecuting Gender-Based Crimes: An Interview with Dr. Hilmi M. Zawati

A conversation with: Regina Paulose

In a virtual interview, accompanying the release of Dr. Zawati’s new book, Fair Labelling and the Dilemma of Prosecuting Gender-Based Crimes at the International Criminal Tribunals by Oxford University Press (2014), we discuss the prosecution of gender based crimes in the international legal system. Dr. Zawati explains below that the lack of accurate description of gender-based crimes in the statutory laws of the international criminal tribunals and courts infringes the principle of “fair labelling,” lead to inconsistent verdicts and punishments, and constitutes a barrier to justice. As a result, sexual violence in wartime settings should be prosecuted separately as crimes in themselves, not as a subsection of war crimes or crimes against humanity. Continue reading