Justice in Jeopardy: Accountability for the Darfur Atrocities

18 Pages Posted: 21 Aug 2011

See all articles by Zachary D. Kaufman

Zachary D. Kaufman

University of Houston Law Center; Washington University in St. Louis - School of Law; Yale University - Law School; Stanford Law School; Harvard University - Harvard Kennedy School (HKS)

Date Written: 2006


This article, published in Criminal Law Forum, considers accountability for atrocities perpetrated in the Darfur region of Sudan. This article documents and assesses the controversy, compromise, and, ultimately, consensus within the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) that resulted in the UNSC’s decision on March 31, 2005, to adopt Resolution 1593, referring the situation in Darfur since July 1, 2002, to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC). This article first considers why the United States government initially proposed the establishment of an alternative transitional justice option for addressing Darfur, in the form of an ad hoc hybrid tribunal to be established in Arusha, Tanzania, that would be jointly administered by the United Nations (UN) and the African Union and act as an extension of the UN International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda. Second, given its opposition to the ICC, the article examines why the United States government ultimately abstained from voting on, rather than exercise its veto against, UNSC Resolution 1593, thus enabling the Darfur situation to be referred to the ICC. Third, the article asks whether the advent of the ICC and the UNSC’s referral of the Darfur situation necessarily preclude the pursuit of other transitional justice options in this case. Finally, the article questions the significance of the UNSC referral of the Darfur situation to the ICC, and the political and legal precedents this referral may set.

Keywords: Transitional Justice, Accountability, Deterrence, Darfur, Sudan, Rwanda, Arusha, Tanzania, Africa, Iraq, United States, U.S. foreign policy, Genocide, Atrocities, War Crimes Tribunals, ICC, ICTR, ICTY, United Nations Security Council, International Law, International Criminal Law

Suggested Citation

Kaufman, Zachary D., Justice in Jeopardy: Accountability for the Darfur Atrocities (2006). Criminal Law Forum, Vol. 16, No. 4, pp. 343-360, 2006, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1912945

Zachary D. Kaufman (Contact Author)

University of Houston Law Center ( email )

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Washington University in St. Louis - School of Law ( email )

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