Organizations

[Dr Plesch is Professor of Diplomacy and Strategy at SOAS University of London and a member (door tenant) of the chambers of Stephen Kay QC at 9 Bedford Row. He is the author of Human Rights After Hitler.] The Russian aggression against Ukraine has created fresh interest in international criminal justice. Vital support for this next phase in the application and development of international criminal law is...

[Dr Amina Adanan is an Assistant Professor in Law at Maynooth University, National University of Ireland.] The UNWCC is the name of the formal multilateral organisation that facilitated a network of tribunals in which war criminals were tried for international crimes committed during WWII. It was a UN agency that operated from 1943-48 to support localised prosecutions of international crimes by the war Victors and...

[Michael Fleming is a Professor at the Polish University Abroad, London.] During the Second World War, the Polish Government in Exile, based in London from the summer of 1940, pursued a twin-track policy to ensure German crimes taking place in occupied Poland were brought to the attention of the international community and that those responsible would face justice. In the first instance, the Polish Government highlighted German...

[Megan Donaldson is a Lecturer in Public International Law at University College London.] [This post draws on a draft entry for the Max Planck Encyclopedia of International Procedural Law (Donaldson 2022), available on request.] Although Ethiopia had been deliberately excluded from membership of the UN War Crimes Commission (UNWCC), Ethiopia sought to submit cases against figures responsible for atrocities during the Italian invasion and occupation (1935–41). The...

[Dr Dawn Sedman is a Senior Lecturer at Nottingham Law School, Nottingham Trent University.] How widely were defences deployed at the UN War Crimes Commission (UNWCC)? Using the 15-volume Official Reports as a preliminary indicator, around one quarter of the cases reported had defences raised and discussed. Only one of these defences was successful: the case of Weiss & Mundo [vol 13], who were accused of the...

Dr Amina Adanan initiated a conference on the 1943-1948 United Nations War Crimes Commission (UNWCC)  involving both her own, Maynooth University School of Law and Criminology, and the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy in SOAS. The online conference included presentations from scholars in a range of disciplines, including law, history, international relations and political science and was organised by Dr Adanan and SOAS’s Prof. Dan Plesch,...

[The post is published under the pseudonym, Sarah Jones, so that the author may remain anonymous. The author or their family faces realistic fears of persecution by Iranian authorities.] Introduction  The 1988 political prisoner massacre (the massacre, the 1988 massacre) in Iran occurred almost 35 years ago. Yet its relevance remains visible in contemporary debates on Iran’s human rights record, the legitimacy...

[Katarzyna Ważyńska-Finck recently defended a PhD on sexual and reproductive rights of children and adolescent and is lecturer in human rights and comparative law at the Université Libre de Bruxelles. Francois Finck holds a PhD in international law and is a policy officer responsible for International and European affairs at Centre d’Action Laïque.] The authors have previously published on this topic...

[Owiso Owiso is a Lecturer in Public International Law at the University of Groningen.] Introduction Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine commenced in February 2022, there have been increased calls for criminal accountability for crimes allegedly (being) committed in the context of the invasion. Following Ukraine’s declarations of February 2014 and February 2015 accepting the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC) and...

Announcements ABILA - Crisis in Ukraine: International Law and Accountability: The ABILA ICC Committee is pleased to co-sponsor a virtual panel on Crisis in Ukraine: International Law and Accountability on Thursday, March 31 at 12:15-1:45 pm ET. Given the tragic outbreak of war in Ukraine and Russia’s flagrant violation of the UN Charter and ongoing commission of crimes, this panel will...

In an excellent recent blog post at Just Security, Tom Dannenbaum identified four options for prosecuting Russia's unprovoked aggression against Ukraine: [T]he International Criminal Court, an ad hoc international tribunal (whether along the lines proposed at Chatham House or pursuant to a General Assembly resolution), a domestic court exercising territorial jurisdiction (in Russia, Belarus, or Ukraine), or a domestic court exercising...

[Julia Emtseva is a Research Fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law and Paul Emtsev is an independent public communication expert.] For Russia, the current war in Ukraine rests on the assumption that NATO’s Eastern enlargement is a threat to the country. For several months, Russian President Vladimir Putin has warned the West that deploying weapons or soldiers to Ukraine would...