International Criminal Court

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“Solid jurisdictional basis”? The ICC’s fragile jurisdiction for crimes allegedly committed in Palestine

On 5 February 2021, Pre-Trial Chamber I issued its long-awaited decision regarding the ICC’s jurisdiction for possible war crimes committed in the occupied Palestinian territories (Gaza and the West Bank, including East Jerusalem) since 13 June 2014 (for an academic analysis, see the symposium here). The decision was requested by the Office of the Prosecutor (OTP), which, while assuming a “reasonable basis to believe” (Art. 53(1) ICC Statute [ICCS]) that such crimes have been committed (see Report on Preliminary Examination Activities 2020, para. 220–24), wanted to clarify the jurisdictional basis of its investigation at this early stage of the proceedings, given the controversies surrounding Palestinian statehood and the possible relevance of this question for the Court’s jurisdiction. The PTC affirmed the Court’s jurisdiction, covering the abovementioned territory, in a 2:1 vote (in favour French judge Perrin de Brichambaut and Beninese judge Alapini-Gansou, against Hungarian judge Kovács). It thus followed the OTP’s request (Decision, para. 22 ff.). Israel and Palestine, victims’ organisations as…

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EJIL: The Podcast! Episode 6 – Trumping International Law?

This episode examines the effects of the four years of the Trump Administration on international law. I am joined by Joseph Weiler, Co-Editor in Chief of EJIL and University Professor at New York University School of Law; Neha Jain, Professor of Public International Law at the European University Institute; and Chimene Keitner, who is Alfred…

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The ICC concludes its preliminary examination in Crimea and Donbas: What’s next for the situation in Ukraine?

Last week was eventful for the ICC despite the disruption of its work caused by the current pandemic. While everyone tuned in to the live hearings with the expanded list of candidates for the coveted position of the new ICC Prosecutor, the outgoing Prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, was busy tidying up her work desk for the incoming Prosecutor by…

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The ICC Prosecutor Releases Guidelines for Agreements Regarding Admission of Guilt

On 12 November 2020, the Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) of the International Criminal Court (ICC) released its Guidelines for Agreements Regarding Admission of Guilt (the Guidelines). The document represents the most recent mile on a long and bumpy road headed towards the consolidation of negotiated justice in International Criminal Law. Since plea bargaining anywhere (but…

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The International Criminal Court Independent Expert Review: questions of trust and tenure

I have previously written on the Independent Expert Review (IER) of the International Criminal Court and its findings on questions of governance structure and culture. In this blog post I’d like to turn to two other running themes through the report: trust and tenure.* The problem of trust My previous post noted the…

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