The Sierra Leone Special Court and Its Legacy: The Impact for Africa and International Criminal Law
The Sierra Leone Special Court and Its Legacy: The Impact for Africa and International Criminal Law, Charles C. Jalloh, ed., Cambridge University Press, 2013
Posted: 31 Aug 2013
Date Written: August 29, 2013
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 thirty-seven 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 UN 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.
The work 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. It comprehensively addresses key legal debates reflecting the Sierra Leone Tribunal's contributions to the development of substantive international criminal law and procedure. The essays were written by 38 experts, including former prosecutors, defense counsel and academics.
Keywords: Special Court for Sierra Leone, international criminal law, crimes against humanity, transitional justice, international criminal tribunals, wartime atrocities, international criminal justice, accountability, legacy of international criminal courts, legacy of the special court for Sierra Leone
JEL Classification: K14, K19, K39, K41, K42
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation