The ECCC’s Contribution to Substantive ICL: The Notion of ‘Civilian Population’ in the Context of Crimes Against Humanity
Forthcoming in Journal of International Criminal Justice, special issue on the legacy of the ECCC
11 Pages Posted: 10 Mar 2020
Date Written: February 18, 2020
In this short essay I will argue that the ‘civilian population’ requirement in Crimes against Humanity (CaH) provisions (e.g. Article 7(1) ICC Statute) must either radically be restricted by way of a teleological (purpose-based) interpretation or – even better – abolished in future CaH provisions. While the traditional International Humanitarian Law (IHL) approach (Section 1) certainly needs to be adjusted with regard to CaH (Section 2), such an adjustment does not resolve the considerable limitation of the protective scope of CaH due to the ‘civilian population’ requirement. The ECCC’s contribution to the debate (Section 3) is to be welcomed and serves as a useful starting point for the more radical interpretation and necessary reform of CaH (Section 4).
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