TITLE

UNIVERSAL JURISDICTION NOT SO UNIVERSAL: Time to Delegate to the International Criminal Court?

AUTHOR(S)
Hoover, Dalila
PUB. DATE
January 2011
SOURCE
Eyes on the ICC;2011, Vol. 8 Issue 1, p73
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
The exercise of universal jurisdiction in cases involving crimes under international law remains highly debated and underlines several le-gal and political issues. Because the principle of universal jurisdiction relies on national authorities to enforce international prohibitions, pivotal decisions are expected to reflect domestic decision-makers' positions as to the interests of justice, the national interest, and other criteria. In many states, the legal system lacks the means to investigate or prosecute crimes that should be investigated using the concept of universal jurisdiction. Indeed, many legal systems do not define the term "crimes" that can be prosecuted under the principle and continue to apply domestic criminal law. The purpose of this article is to discuss the scope of universal jurisdiction and the risks associated with its application. In particular, this article highlights the various obstacles that may explain why universal jurisdiction has not yet proven to be an effective tool to combat impunity. Finally, this article proposes a solution that may remedy the current inadequacies associated with the implementation of the principle of universal jurisdiction and would ensure peace and justice within the international community with regards to heinous crimes. Considering the obstacles and risks associated with the scope and application of universal jurisdiction, the best way to protect the international community from being affected by unpunished crime is to subject the exercise of universal jurisdiction of a state party to the Rome Statute to the scrutiny of the ICC through the creation of a Review Board that would, in turn, assess the legitimacy of a state's claim over a particular case according to fair and uniform laws.
ACCESSION #
79913543

 

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