Category Archives: Complementarity

Post Conflict Justice and the ICC: some thoughts on false expectations and the illusion of staying together “for the kids”

At the end of last week, I attended a very interesting conference organised by the Grotius Centre of Leiden University on the “Impact and Effectiveness of the International Criminal Court”, the final conference of a several year project on post conflict justice and local ownership. The wide-ranging list of speakers covered a large number of topics, such as the question of legacy of the ICC, the insertion of the ICC in the restorative justice and peace debates or the operation and impact of the principle of complementarity.

I was privileged to be able to present my thoughts on complementarity which I called “a tale of false promises and mixed up chameleons”. You can read an extended version of my speaking notes here, on the excellent new website on post conflict justice ( launched at the conference. In them, I analyse the current case-law on the issue and suggest that it does not allow the principle to realize the broader goals assigned to the ICC of promoting the rule of law and local ownership.

Ultimately, however, I question whether these goals should be assigned to the ICC as a function in the first place in the following way: Continue reading