International Criminal Law

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Gender Persecution and Gender Apartheid in Afghanistan: Seeking the Appropriate Legal Basis for International Accountability

From as early as 1980, Afghanistan signed the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW), a decisive step in protecting women’s rights to equality, notably in education. Additionally, since 1994, Afghanistan has been a signatory to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR), which explicitly includes rights such as education, privacy, and the right to life. Notably, Afghanistan is also a party to the Universal Declaration on Human Rights (UDHR). After the withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan in August 2021, the Taliban launched their offensive, marking their return to power after being ousted in 2001. In August 2021, they seized control of the capital, leading to the collapse of  the government Since the Taliban takeover, the situation for women has rapidly deteriorated, with ongoing escalations. In August 2021, women were instructed to remain at home. By September 2021, they were prohibited from pursuing…

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The Recent Genocide Cases and Public Interest Litigation: A Complicated Relationship

Here we go again! On 1 March 2024, Nicaragua instituted proceedings before the International Court of Justice (ICJ, the Court) against Germany for complicity in genocide. This marks another development in a series of disputes pending before the Court in the last four years, where it is asked to decide on whether a State has committed genocidal…

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Gaza, Forced Displacement, and Genocide

International courts and commissions of enquiry have been reluctant to find that forced displacement constitutes genocide. Forced displacement, in its various forms, is a war crime (Rome Statute, Article 8(2)(a)(vii)) and a crime against humanity (Rome Statute, Article 7 (1)(d)), but not genocide. Indeed, the Genocide Convention omits forced transfer as a genocidal act. Still, in…

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Old Problems, New Approaches: Plea Negotiations in International Criminal Law – Lessons from Colombia’s Special Jurisdiction for Peace

Victims are the most affected persons in contexts of mass violence, yet they tend to be the most unheard when international justice arrives. The procedural design of international courts and tribunals, tend to focus their work on the role of prosecutors and the defense, largely ignoring the interests of victims. This has led to criticisms by several stakeholders…

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First war crimes conviction at the KSC: Developing jurisprudence and the right to reparations

Last December, the Appeals Panel at the Kosovo Specialist Chambers (KSC) delivered its judgment in its first war crimes prosecution. Salih Mustafa, a special unit (BIA) commander in the Kosovo Liberation Army during the Kosovo war had been convicted for the war crimes of murder, torture and arbitrary detention. He is now facing 22 years…

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