Author: Kevin Jon Heller

A guilty admission: I had not seen Rob in person for the past few years. He was in Birmingham; I was in Amsterdam. He wasn't traveling as much, and our paths didn't cross. I didn't even know how sick he was for a while. Rob wasn't the type to make or want people to feel sorry for him. Fortunately, Rob and...

In my previous post, which was quite critical of the OTP's decision not to seek authorization to investigate British war crimes in Iraq, I made two central points. The first was that, pursuant to the Afghanistan appeals judgment, the OTP would not have needed to present the Pre-Trial Chamber (PTC) with information concerning complementarity and the PTC would not have...

A number of us -- me, Aurel Sari, Eliav Lieblich, Andrew Bell, Sasha Greenawalt, Craig Martin, Ed Swaine -- have been having an interesting discussion on Twitter about two important issues concerning the use of force. The first is when IHL begins to apply in an IAC. The traditional position is that any use of interstate force triggers IHL and...

A few days ago, I had the pleasure of giving an online lecture for the Iranian Center for International Criminal Law about the relationship between the US and the ICC. In the lecture, I trace the evolution of the US-ICC relationship and try to predict what that relationship will look like under President Biden. I also speculate about why Trump has...

I just had the pleasure of a sharp exchange on Twitter with my dear friend Mark Kersten, one of the most insightful commentators on the ICC. The exchange was motivated by the ASP making it "officially official" (Mark's nicely turned phrase) that the process for electing the next Prosecutor will be opened up to include (at a minimum) any longlisted...

According to Stephanie Maupas, in late July the chair of the Committee on the Election of the Prosecutor (CEP), Sabine Nölke, said the following concerning the Committee's vetting of candidates long-listed for Prosecutor: "I made the statement very clearly to the States Parties, the vetting process did not disclose any disqualifying information,” she said. The Canadian diplomat also asserted, not without...

On July 16, a coalition of 10 civil-society groups released a joint statement concerning the process the Assembly of States Parties (ASP) created to shortlist candidates for the next ICC Prosecutor. The statement praised "the rigorous process undertaken by the Committee and Panel and the criteria considered to evaluate candidates," applauded "the Committee’s initiative" in setting up an (admittedly incomplete)...

Thirteen years ago, when I was teaching at the University of Auckland in New Zealand, I helped recruit a brilliant young Osgoode Hall PhD student to the law school for a lectureship. He moved halfway around the world, as I had the year before, and we quickly became fast friends based on our similar intellectual interests, mutual enjoyment of running,...

Our friends at West Point have just launched an ambitious new blog, Articles of War.  The "Authors" page lists seven contributors, all of whom are well-known in IHL, military law, and cognate-discipline circles: Col. Joshua F. Berry, Prof. Geoff Corn, Prof. Ashley Deeks, Lt. Gen. Charles N. Pede, Col. Shane Reeves, Prof. Michael N. Schmitt, and Prof. Sean Watts. The...

My friend Craig Martin has started a new international-law podcast entitled "JIB/JAB: The Law of War Podcast." Here is his description: This is a podcast about the various legal regimes that govern the use of force and armed conflict – primarily the jus ad bellum regime, which governs when states may lawfully resort to force, and the jus in bello regime (also known as international...