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Enhancing the Legitimacy, Status and Role of the International Criminal Court by Using Transitional Justice or Restorative Justice Strategies

Interdisciplinary Journal of Human Rights Law (2011-12) 83-102

20 Pages Posted: 4 Aug 2012  

Jeremy Sarkin

University of South Africa

Date Written: August 3, 2012

Abstract

This article reviews the role of the International Criminal Court (ICC) and argues that, beyond that of retributive justice, the court ought to be playing a much greater deterrent role. It is argued that the ICC ought to do this by integrating restorative justice or transitional justice approaches into its work. If this is done the ICC could have a more dramatic effect on the human rights landscape in situations in many countries. The article argues that the Court could, within the transitional justice paradigm, affect issues concerning truth, reparations, and reconciliation and, within the restorative justice framework, play a restorative function in countries, especially those where the court currently has cases or is investigating cases to determine whether to issue indictments. The ICC can set the standard for retributive justice but it can also have a critical role beyond simply prosecuting the few it is able to pursue. The Court should play its part in ensuring that complementarity is a reality by helping with domestic prosecutions, by assisting in the process of truth recovery, and by taking other steps to assist states to implement transitional and restorative justice processes.

Suggested Citation

Sarkin, Jeremy, Enhancing the Legitimacy, Status and Role of the International Criminal Court by Using Transitional Justice or Restorative Justice Strategies (August 3, 2012). Interdisciplinary Journal of Human Rights Law (2011-12) 83-102. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2123033

Jeremy Sarkin (Contact Author)

University of South Africa ( email )

P.O. Box 392
UNISA
Pretoria, Gauteng 0003
South Africa

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