Peace and Justice at the International Criminal Court

Peace and Justice at the International Criminal Court

A Court of Last Resort

Errol P. Mendes

This authoritative book addresses the greatest challenge facing the International Criminal Court since its historic establishment in 1998: reconciling the demand for justice for the most serious crimes known to humanity with the promotion of sustainable peace in conflict areas around the world.

Preface

Errol P. Mendes

Subjects: law - academic, human rights, politics and public policy, human rights, international politics

Extract

There are times when those who work in the Academy or in public service who focus on justice and human rights may have doubts that human progress is possible given the horrors that the world has witnessed in the last century and the first decade of the 21st Century. This was certainly the case for this author after close to two decades of academic and professional work in the fields of international human rights, justice and law. Then came along the opportunity to experience first hand the work of those in the international arena who devote, not only their professional lives, but also much of their personal lives to building a global institution the primary function of which is to promote peace and justice among our human family. The institution was the International Criminal Court the historic establishment of which is the culmination of centuries of humanity’s desire to promote the idea that sustainable peace is only possible in the absence of impunity, as the first chapter of this work will discuss. It was at the end of 2008 that I readily accepted an invitation to be a Visiting Professional at the International Criminal Court in The Hague during the spring and summer of 2009. I opted for a position in the Legal Advisory Section of the Office of the Prosecutor. This choice was deliberate because I wished to understand how the early investigations and prosecutions were being shaped by the Office of the Prosecutor and, in particular, by the...