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Kate Gibson, John RWD Jones QC, Michael G Karnavas and Melinda Taylor

This chapter examines the extent to which independent structures, either internal or external, are required to ensure equality of arms and the rights of the defence at international criminal courts and tribunals. The chapter compares and evaluates the different structures which have existed at the various international and mixed criminal courts and tribunals, and identifies defects and lacunae in the current infrastructure. After analysing the specific features of domestic bar associations, and bearing in mind the important role that such associations play in both protecting and regulating the defence profession, the chapter considers whether the establishment of an independent counsel association at the International Criminal Court would address and ameliorate problems currently faced by international defence counsel. The chapter also examines the optimum relationship of such an association with existing entities, such as the International Criminal Court’s Office of Public Counsel for the Defence, which seeks to assist the defence and promote equality of arms through internal avenues. KEYWORDS: international courts and tribunals, equality of arms, international defence counsel, ethics, counsel association