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Opposition to Withdrawal by States

The African Union made headlines Tuesday for purportedly agreeing to mass withdrawal from the International Criminal Court. The reality is more complex. The decision by AU member states welcomes the announced withdrawals by South Africa,…
A general view shows the headquarters of the African Union (AU) building in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, January 29, 2017.
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Governments Signal Continued Support for Court

The recent decisions by South Africa, Burundi, and Gambia to leave the International Criminal Court (ICC) are generating wide attention and speculation about a mass exodus from the court by African countries.  But think it’s clear where Africa stands on…
Stella Ndirangu of ICJ Kenya
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Seeking justice for the ongoing grave human rights abuses in Syria has proven largely elusive. Now the shield of impunity is beginning to crack. Several countries, including Sweden, Germany, and France are in the process of investigating some…
Syrian Man Carries Children After Barrel Bomb Attack
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Refugee Crisis and Universal Jurisdiction Cases in Europe

What’s the basis for European courts to try atrocities committed in Syria and Iraq? What is universal jurisdiction? Does universal jurisdiction mean that every country can investigate any grave international crime committed in Syria and Iraq? What…
Syrian Man Carries Children After Barrel Bomb Attack
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Sentencing of Ahmad al-Faqi al-Mahdi of Mali

(Geneva) – The International Criminal Court’s sentencing on September 27, 2016 of Ahmad al-Faqi al-Mahdi for his role in destroying historical and religious monuments in Timbuktu, Mali, sends a clear message that attacking the world’s historical treasures…
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As the African Union summit closed on January 31, 2016, Kenyan media ignited with reports that the African Union endorsed mass withdrawal of African countries from the International Criminal Court. But the reality is a lot less newsworthy than the main…
A general view shows delegates during the 26th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of the African Union (AU) at the AU headquarters in Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa, January 31, 2016.
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Rights Body Stops Short of Urging Syria Referral to International Criminal Court

The United Nations Human Rights Council took bold action to address the chronically poor human rights situations in Belarus and Eritrea, Human Rights Watch said today, at the closing of the council’s 20th session. The council unanimously condemned the “…
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U.S. President George W. Bush will be traveling to Africa from July 7-12, visiting Senegal, South Africa, Botswana, Uganda, and Nigeria. This packet from Human Rights Watch includes material for each stop along the way. A brief overview of the Bush…