Accountability for Human Rights Atrocities in International Law Beyond the Nuremberg Legacy

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  • Edition: 3rd
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2009-04-15
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press

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The fall of dictatorial regimes and the eruption of destructive civil conflicts around the world have led to calls for holding individuals accountable for human rights atrocities. This book offers a comprehensive study of the promise and limitations of international criminal law as a means of enforcing international human rights and humanitarian law. It provides a searching analysis of the principal crimes under the law of nations, such as genocide and crimes against humanity and an appraisal of the most important prosecutorial and other mechanisms developed to bring individuals to justice. After applying their conclusions in a detailed case study, the authors offer a series of compelling conclusions on the prospects for accountability. This fully updated new edition also contains expanded coverage of the increasing numbers of international criminal trials including the cases of Bosnia, Serbia, and East Timor. It also explores individual accountability for terrorist acts and accountability for acts undertaken in the name of counter-terrorism policy, and provides expanded coverage of aggression and crimes against peace.

Author Biography

Steven R. Ratner is Professor of Law at the University of Michigan Law School. He was previously the Albert Sidney Burleson Professor in Law at the University of Texas School of Law (Austin) and an Attorney-Adviser in the Office of the Legal Adviser at the U.S. State Department. Jason S. Abrams is an international lawyer residing in New York City. He has served as Legal Officer, Policy Coordination Officer and Consultant to the United Nations. His work has included private international matters involving UN Headquarters and Peacekeeping Missions, landmines, and management reform initiatives. Earlier in his career, Mr. Abrams was an Attorney-Adviser for the U.S. Department of State.

James L. Bischoff is a Law Clerk in the Chambers of the Honorable Juan R. Torruella of the United States Court of Appeals for the First Circuit. He previously worked as an Associate Legal Officer at the ICTY and served on the Secretariat of the standing committee charged with proposing amendments to the Tribunal's Rules of Procedure and Evidence.

Table of Contents

Abbreviations and Shorthand Forms in Footnotesp. xiii
Acknowledgementsp. xv
Table of Authoritiesp. xix
Introductionp. xlv
Substantive Law
Individual Accountability for Human Rights Abuses: Historical and Legal Underpinningsp. 3
A Brief History of Individual Accountabilityp. 3
Four Bodies of Lawp. 9
The Nature of Legal Responsibilityp. 15
Individual Accountability as a Holistic Frameworkp. 17
Methodology and Sources of International Lawp. 19
The Principles of Legality: Nullum Crimen Sine Lege and Related Conceptsp. 23
A Word on Cultural Relativismp. 26
Genocide and the Imperfections of Codificationp. 27
Background and Preparation of the Genocide Conventionp. 27
Definition of Genocidep. 30
Incitment to Genocidep. 42
Genocide under Customary International Lawp. 42
Theoretical and Practical Challengesp. 44
Crimes Against Humanity and the Inexactitude of Customp. 48
Evolution of the Conceptp. 48
Core Definitional Issues: Elements of the International Crimep. 51
Offenses Constituting Crimes Against Humanityp. 70
Theoretical and Practical Challengesp. 79
War Crimes and the Limitations of Accountability for Acts in Armed Conflictp. 82
From Ancient Origins to Modern Codesp. 82
Offenses during International Conflictsp. 85
Offenses during Non-International Conflictsp. 98
Afterword on Destruction of Cultural Propertyp. 110
Other Abuses Incurring Individual Responsibility Under International Lawp. 114
Slavery and Forced Laborp. 115
Torturep. 121
Racial Discrimination and Apartheidp. 125
Forced Disappearancesp. 128
Terrorismp. 130
A Brief Word on Crimes Against Peacep. 136
Expanding and Contracting Culpability: Complicity, Defenses, and Other Barriers to Criminalityp. 141
Forms of Individual Criminal Responsibilityp. 141
Defenses under International Lawp. 150
Statutes of Limitationsp. 158
Theoretical and Practical Challengesp. 161
Mechanisms for Accountability
Mechanisms for Accountability: Framing the Issuesp. 167
Legal Requirements of Individual Accountabilityp. 167
Accountability in Contextp. 171
The Forum of First Resort: National Tribunalsp. 177
A Jurisdictional Primerp. 177
Prosecutions before National Tribunals: Four Contemporary Casesp. 185
Prosecutions before National Courts of Other Statesp. 198
Opportunities and Challengesp. 203
The Progeny of Nuremberg: International Criminal Tribunalsp. 209
The Nuremberg and Related Tribunalsp. 209
The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslaviap. 212
International Criminal Tribunal for Rwandap. 223
The International Criminal Courtp. 230
Hybrid or Internationalized Tribunalsp. 246
Opportunities and Challengesp. 251
Afterword on the International Court of Justice and Regional Human Rights Courtsp. 256
Non-Prosecutorial Options: Investigatory Commissions, Civil Suits, Immigration Measures, and Lustrationp. 259
Investigatory Commissions: Accountability through Truth and Acknowledgmentp. 259
Civil Suits: An Alternative Day in Court for Victimsp. 272
Immigration Measures: Denying Refuge to Offendersp. 281
A Word on Lustrationp. 285
Developing the Case: Comments on Evidence and Judicial Assistancep. 288
Evidence: A Dearth of Uniform Standardsp. 288
Judicial Assistance and the Limits of International Cooperationp. 294
A Case Study: The Atrocities of the Khmer Rouge
The Khmer Rouge Rule over Cambodia: A Historical Overviewp. 305
The Philosophy and Structure of the Khmer Rougep. 306
The Pattern of Abusesp. 308
Hostilities with Vietnamp. 314
The Khmer Rouge since 1979p. 315
Applying the Lawp. 319
Genocidep. 320
Crimes Against Humanityp. 323
War Crimesp. 325
Other Acts Incurring Individual Criminal Responsibilityp. 329
Defensesp. 333
Crimes under Cambodian Lawp. 333
Engaging the Mechanismsp. 341
Framing the Optionsp. 341
National Trialsp. 344
International Criminal Tribunalsp. 349
The Option Realized: A Hybrid Tribunalp. 350
Investigatory Commissionsp. 354
Civil Suitsp. 355
Immigration Measuresp. 356
Lustrationp. 357
International Court of Justicep. 358
Evidence and Judicial Assistancep. 358
Striving for Justice: The Prospects for Individual Accountabilityp. 365
The State of the Lawp. 365
The Processes for Pursuing Justicep. 369
The Fate of Individual Accountability: A Word of Cautionp. 376
Charter of the International Military Tribunal at Nurembergp. 380
Allied Control Council Law No. 10p. 382
Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocidep. 384
Geneva Convention (I) for the Amelioration of the Condition of the Wounded and Sick in Armed Forces in the Fieldp. 385
Geneva Convention (II) for the Amelioration of the Condition of Wounded, Sick and Shipwrecked Members of Armed Forces at Seap. 387
Geneva Convention (III) Relative to the Treatment of Prisoners of Warp. 387
Geneva Convention (IV) Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of Warp. 388
Supplementary Convention on the Abolition of Slavery, the Slave Trade, and Institutions and Practices Similar to Slaveryp. 388
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rightsp. 389
Convention on the Non-Applicability of Statutory Limitations to War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanityp. 390
International Convention on the Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheidp. 391
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and Relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I)p. 393
Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949, and Relating to the Protection of Victims of Non-International Armed Conflicts (Protocol II)p. 395
Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishmentp. 396
Statute of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslaviap. 397
Statute of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwandap. 402
International Law Commission Draft Code of Crimes Against the Peace and Security of Mankindp. 403
Statute of the International Criminal Courtp. 407
United States Alien Tort Claims Actp. 427
United States Torture Victim Protection Actp. 427
Bibliographyp. 429
Indexp. 473
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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