Alice Riccardi

The Libyan Case Before the International Criminal Court: A Test for Complementarity and the Respect of the Rights of the Accused

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: Libya; International Criminal Court; Complementarity; Admissibility; Transitional Justice; Human Rights.

On 31 May 2013 and 11 October 2013 respectively the International Criminal Court Pre-Trial Chamber I decided to reject Libya's challenge to the admissibility of the case against Saif Al-Islam Gaddafi, and to grant it vis-à-vis Abdullah Al-Senussi. Both decisions, which today stand before the Appeals Chamber, were lengthy awaited in that they contribute to shape the role the Court wants to play in transitional contexts. Although the complementarity principle awards primacy to national jurisdictions, the standards these latter must respect in order to be preferred to the ICC are disputed. In particular, Libya's alleged disrespect of both accused human rights is by some regarded as a legitimate ground to preclude its jurisdiction. Today's Pre-Trial Chamber interpretation of Art. 17 of the Rome Statute seems to some extent to exclude human rights concerns from the Court assessment of national jurisdictions ability and willingness to investigate and prosecute.

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