Post-Second World War Hungarian Criminal Justice and International Law – The Legacy of the People's Tribunals
The Historical Origins of International Criminal Law - Vol. II., Morten Bergsmo, Cheah Wui Ling and Yi Ping eds., Torkel Opsahl, 2014, pp. 735-763
30 Pages Posted: 19 Jan 2015 Last revised: 31 Dec 2016
Date Written: August 17, 2014
This contribution aims to introduce the organization and jurisprudence of a post-Second World War Hungarian special tribunal that was established to try Hungarian war criminals. Relying in part on public international law, the People's Tribunals conducted probably the very first criminal proceedings in the history of international criminal justice for the crime of aggression, convicting former prime ministers, cabinet members and members of parliament. Moreover, the Hungarian tribunals created a special category of crimes - crimes against the people - that could be seen as a domestic version of crimes against humanity.
Keywords: International criminal law, crimes against peace, crime of aggression, war crimes, domestic war crimes proceedings
JEL Classification: K14, K33
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