The Sierra Leone Special Court and its Legacy
The Impact for Africa and International Criminal Law
- Editor: Charles Chernor Jalloh, University of Pittsburgh, School of Law
- Date Published: July 2015
- availability: Available
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9781107546004
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The Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) is the third modern international criminal tribunal supported by the United Nations and the first to be situated where the crimes were committed. This timely, important, and comprehensive book is the first to critically assess the impact and legacy of the SCSL for Africa and international criminal law. The collection, containing 37 original chapters from leading scholars and respected practitioners with inside knowledge of the tribunal, analyzes cutting-edge and controversial issues with significant implications for international criminal law and transitional justice. These include joint criminal enterprise; the novel crime against humanity of forced marriage; the war crime prohibiting enlisting and using child soldiers in the first court to prosecute that offense; the prosecution of the war crime of attacks against United Nations peacekeepers in the first tribunal where this offense was prosecuted; the tension between truth commissions and criminal trials in the first country to simultaneously have the two; and the questions of whether it is permissible under international law for states to unilaterally confer blanket amnesties to local perpetrators of universally condemned international crimes, whether the immunities enjoyed by an incumbent head of a third state bars his prosecution before an ad hoc treaty-based international criminal court, and whether such courts may be funded by donations from states without compromising judicial independence.Read more
- Contains original papers by a select group of pre-eminent scholars and practitioners with inside knowledge of the inner workings of the Sierra Leone Tribunal
- Comprehensively addresses key legal debates reflecting the Sierra Leone Tribunal's contributions to the development of substantive international criminal law and procedure
- Written by 38 experts, including former prosecutors, defense counsel and academics
Reviews & endorsements
"Over the course of a decade, the Special Court for Sierra Leone demonstrated that a national-international partnership may hold to account persons most responsible for wartime atrocities. Its legacy includes many milestones: the first prosecutions for forced marriage and child soldier recruitment; the first inclusion of a Defense Office within the organs of the Court; and the first conviction since Nuremberg of a former head of state. In this remarkable volume, the foremost experts on the Court analyze all this and more. Their essays examine the past work of the Court with an eye toward the future – toward lessons that may enhance future efforts at accountability and redress. The result is a vade mecum for all who work for global justice."
Diane Marie Amann, Emily and Ernest Woodruff Chair in International Law, University of GeorgiaSee more reviews
"In this fundamental work, Professor Charles Jalloh, a Sierra Leonean-Canadian scholar who first distinguished himself as an international criminal lawyer in the Charles Taylor Trial at the Sierra Leone Special Court, has assembled a stellar group of experts to comprehensively assess the Court’s crucial legacy to Africa and international criminal justice. Covering the full gamut of substantive legal issues of enduring significance to the work of the International Criminal Court and other tribunals charged with the responsibility to prosecute international crimes – ranging from head of state immunity to national amnesties for international crimes, child recruitment, the novel crime against humanity of forced marriage, joint criminal enterprise, command responsibility, and the relationship between truth commissions and criminal trials – this outstanding volume is an enormous contribution to the international criminal law and transitional justice literature. This significant achievement of the contributing scholars and the editor, who has quickly become a renowned commentator on issues relating to international justice in Africa, is a must read for legal and other academics, practitioners, policy-makers, students and anyone else seeking to understand the successes, and limitations, of the second generation hybrid tribunal model and its place in the global struggle against impunity."
Fatou Bensouda, Prosecutor, International Criminal Court
"This volume towers above everything – and anything – that, to date, has been written about the Special Court for Sierra Leone. The breadth is singular: the book covers all aspects of the institution. The work is deeply interdisciplinary, harnessing a multiplicity of perspectives in a manner that unpacks the Special Court as a legal, social, and political institution. The quality is extraordinary. Each chapter is elegantly written; each contribution is so self-aware that the sum of the book well exceeds its parts. Charles Jalloh, whose nimble hands assembled this collection and whose energy electrified it, leaves the international community with an indispensible resource about the Special Court as well as a vibrant touchstone for transitional justice generally."
Mark A. Drumbl, Class of 1975 Alumni Professor of Law and Director, Transnational Law Institute, Washington and Lee University
"The pending closure of the International Criminal Tribunals for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), Rwanda (ICTR) and the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) has given rise to considerable scholarly and international community reflection about their ultimate legacy. As part of this, there have been several noted efforts to identify and harness the legacy of the ICTY and the ICTR. But, so far, there has been no equivalent scholarly evaluation of the legacy and contributions of the SCSL to international criminal justice. This edited book fills this huge gap in the literature. By critically but fairly analyzing the SCSL’s impact, in this volume unprecedented in its size, scope and depth, Professor Charles Jalloh and the many other esteemed contributors to this essay collection have immensely enriched the global conversation about the legacy of international criminal tribunals. It is a path-breaking work that sets a new benchmark for future assessments of the contributions of these courts to the advancement of the principle of individual criminal responsibility at the international level and the architecture of modern international criminal law."
Hassan B. Jallow, Chief Prosecutor of the United Nations Mechanism for International Criminal Tribunals and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and former Judge, Appeals Chamber, Special Court for Sierra Leone
"Professor Charles Jalloh, who edited this book, is one of the most prominent scholars to have studied the Special Court for Sierra Leone. The authors represent a cross section of specialists, including many who, like Professor Jalloh, have worked at the Court. There is an especially important introductory essay by one of the Court’s Prosecutors, Stephen Rapp. The contributions have been carefully organized and edited. They cover many features of the institution in a thorough, professional and often exhaustive manner. This book immediately becomes the authoritative reference on the Special Court. There simply is nothing else remotely comparable on the subject. It is and is likely to remain very much the last word on the subject of this fascinating and unprecedented institution."
William A. Schabas, OC MRIA, Middlesex University; Professor of International Criminal Law and Human Rights, Leiden University; and Emeritus Professor of Human Rights Law, National University of Ireland, Galway
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- Date Published: July 2015
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9781107546004
- length: 824 pages
- dimensions: 254 x 178 x 42 mm
- weight: 1.4kg
- contains: 15 b/w illus. 2 tables
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
Part I. The Expectations of the Sierra Leone Tribunal
Part II. Approach to Individual Criminal Responsibility
Part III. Approach to Substantive International Crimes
Part IV. Approach to Challenging Issues in International Criminal Law
Part V. Funding, Process and Cooperation
Part VI. Institutional Innovations in the Practice of the Special Court for Sierra Leone
Part VII. Special Challenges Facing the Sierra Leone Tribunal
Part VIII. The Impact and Legacy of the Sierra Leone Tribunal.
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