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UPDATE: International Criminal Courts for the Former Yugoslavia, Rwanda and Sierra Leone: A Guide to Online and Print Resources

 

By Amy Burchfield

 

Amy Burchfield is the Head of Access and Faculty Services at the Cleveland-Marshall College of Law Library. She previously worked as the International and Foreign Law Reference Librarian at the John Wolff International & Comparative Law Library at the Georgetown University Law Center.  Ms. Burchfield earned her JD from The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law and an MLIS and MA in German translation from Kent State University. She is the author of International Sports Law and The Crisis in Darfur: Researching the Legal Issues.

 

Published July 2011
(Previously updated on August 2008)
See the Archive Version

 

Table of Contents

Introduction

Chart Comparing the Three Courts

International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY)

                  Overview of the Court

                  Basic Documents

                  Case Law

                  Selected Print Sources & Links

International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR)

                  Overview of the Court

                  Basic Documents

                  Case Law

                  Selected Print Sources & Links

Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL)

                  Overview of the Court Structure

                  Basic Documents

                  Case Law

                  Selected Print Sources & Links

Multi-Court Sources – Online and In Print

Research Institutes and Educational Resources

Other Research Guides and Bibliographies

 

Introduction

Despite vows of “never again” in the aftermath of the Holocaust, late twentieth century history was marked by a series of brutal conflicts that resulted in war crimes, crimes against humanity, genocide and other serious crimes. Several international tribunals were established with the goal of prosecuting those who committed these crimes.

 

This guide focuses on online and print sources relating to the following three international criminal courts: the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) and the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL). The guide begins with a chart comparing key features of these three courts. The guide then examines each court individually, providing an overview of the court, the court’s basic documents, case law sources, and a listing of additional print and online sources for that individual court. The next section of the guide identifies online and print resources that deal with multiple international criminal tribunals. Finally, the last sections cover research institutes and educational resources, and other research guides.

 

I have purposely omitted several key courts and tribunals from this guide in order to focus narrowly on the ICTY, ICTR and SCSL. Researchers interested in the International Criminal Court (ICC) can consult that section within the ASIL Guide to Electronic Resources for International Law. An excellent collection of primary materials on the Nuremburg war crimes trials is available through the Avalon Project. Finally, SMU’s International Criminal Courts guide covers other tribunals including those for Cambodia, Iraq, East Timor, and Lebanon.

 

Chart Comparing the Three Courts

 

 

Date est.

Establishing document

Number of judges

Justiciable

crimes

Chief prosecutor

Location of court

Official language

Temporal constraints

Geographic constraints

ICTY

May 23, 1993

UN Security Council Resolution 827 (1993)

16 permanent and

up to 9 ad litem

Grave breaches of  Geneva Conventions of 1949; violations of the laws of war; genocide; crimes against humanity

Serge

Bram-mertz

 

since

Jan. 2008

The Hague, The Nether-lands

English and French

(Serbo-Croat is unofficial)

Crimes commit-

ted since 1991

Territory of the former Yugoslavia

ICTR

Nov. 8, 1994

UN Security Council Resolution

955 (1994)

16 permanent and 18 ad litem judges

Genocide, crimes against humanity, serious violations of the Geneva Conventions of 1949

Hassan Bubacar Jallow

 

Since

Sept. 2003

Arusha, Tanzania

English and French

(Kinyarwanda is unofficial)

Crimes commit-

ted between Jan. 1, 1994 and Dec. 1994

Territory of Rwanda

SCSL

Aug. 14, 2000

Treaty between UN and government of Sierra Leone

 

At least 8, and no more than 11

Crimes against humanity; violations of international humanitarian law; serious crimes under Sierra Leonean law

Brenda Hollis

 

since Feb. 2010

Freetown,

Sierra Leone

English

(Krio is

unofficial)

Crimes commit-

ted since Nov. 30, 1996

Territory of Sierra Leone

 

International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY)

Overview of the Court

The International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) was established in 1993 by United Nations Security Council Resolution 827. The ICTY is authorized to prosecute persons responsible for grave breaches of the 1949 Geneva Conventions, violations of the laws of war, genocide, and crimes against humanity. The ICTY can only hear cases concerning crimes committed on the territory of the former Yugoslavia since 1991.

 

The ICTY is organized into three Trial Chambers and one Appeals Chamber. Three permanent judges and a maximum of six ad litem judges are members of each Trial Chamber. Seven permanent judges are members of the Appeals Chamber. The working languages of the ICTY are English and French.

 

Former Serb President, Slobodan Milošević, [New York Times Topics archive] died on March 11, 2006 during proceedings at the ICTY. He was indicted for crimes in Kosovo, Croatia, and Bosnia and Herzegovina. The tribunal did not reach a verdict in his case.

 

Bosnia Serb politician, Radovan Karadzić, [New York Times Topics archive] was arrested on July 21, 2008, and transferred to the ICTY in July 2008. He is accused of ordering the 1995 Srebrenica massacre. The trial of Karadzić is ongoing.

 

Serbian Army leader, Ratko Mladić, [New York Times Topics archive], was arrested on May 26, 2011, having been an international fugitive for over 15 years.  He was transferred to the ICTY on May 31 and is expected to make an initial appearance before the tribunal in June 2011.  He is accused of implementing the 1995 Srebrenica massacre that claimed the lives of over 8,000 Muslim men and boys.

Basic Documents

The following basic documents of the ICTY are available at the Court’s official website.

  • Statute of the Tribunal (updated September 2009)
  • National legislations implementing the ICTY Statute (Greece, Romania, Hungary, Croatia, U.K., Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Bosnia-Herzegovina, France, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Spain, The Netherlands, Finland, U.S., Italy)
  • Agreements on the enforcement of sentences (Albania, Poland, Italy, Finland, Norway, Austria, Sweden, France, Spain, Germany, Denmark, U.K., Belgium, Ukraine, Portugal, Estonia and Slovakia)
  • Rules of Procedure and Evidence
  • Defense Counsel Materials
  • Detention rules, regulations and other materials
  • Practice directions

 

The ICTY basic documents are also available online at the University of Minnesota Human Rights Library.

 

In print, see Basic Documents International Tribunal for the Prosecution of Persons Responsible for Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law Committed in the Territory of the Former Yugoslavia since 1991 ([Netherlands:] United Nations, International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, 1995-).

 

Additionally, the ICTY publishes The Yearbook ([Netherlands]: United Nations, ICTY, 1995- ) documenting the activities of the ICTY and recording speeches and other background information.

Case Law

Cases and Judgments are found on the ICTY website. All documents for individual parties are gathered in one place: indictments, judgments, decisions, orders and transcripts. This is the best source for up-to-date case law information.

 

ICTY Judgment Summaries (American University Washington College of Law).

 

In Westlaw (subscription database requiring a password), ICTY cases are available in the INT-ICTY database.

 

Judicial Reports / International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia = Recueils judiciaires / Tribunal pénal pour l’ex-Yougoslavie (The Hague: Kluwer Law International, 1999- ). This includes indictments, orders, decisions and judgments. It is considered the official print reporter for the ICTY, and is published for and on behalf of the United Nations by Kluwer Law International / Martinus Nijhoff. This set runs approximately five years behind—consult the ICTY website for the most current case law.

 

Global War Crimes Tribunal Collection (Nijmegen, the Netherlands: Global Law Association, 1997- ) this commercial source includes trial transcripts, selected full-text judgments, and other materials.

Selected Print Sources & Links

ICTY Print Sources

  • M. Cherif Bassiouni, The Law of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (Irvington-on-Hudson, NY: Transnational Publishers, 1996).
  • Gideon Boas and William A. Schabas (eds.), International Criminal Law Developments in the Case Law of the ICTY (Leiden: Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 2003).
  • Genocide, War Crimes, and Crimes Against Humanity: A Topical Digest of the Case Law of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (New York: Human Rights Watch, 2006).
  • Sanja Kutnjak and John Hagan, Reclaiming Justice: The International Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia and Local Courts (New York: Oxford University Press, 2011).
  • Michael J. Kelly, Nowhere to Hide: Defeat of the Sovereign Immunity Defense for Crimes of Genocide and the Trials of Slobodan Milošević and Saddam Hussein (New York: Peter Lang, 2005).
  • John Laughland, Travesty: The Trial of Slobodan Milošević and the Corruption of International Justice (London;  Ann Arbor, MI: Pluto, 2007).
  • Virginia Morris and Michael P. Scharf,  An Insider’s Guide to the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (Irvington-on-Hudson, NY: Transnational Publishers, 1995).
  • O. Olusanya, Sentencing War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity under the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (Groningen: Europa Law Pub., 2005).

 

ICTY / Former Yugoslavia Links

 

ASIL Insights Coverage
The American Society of International Law publishes ASIL Insights, an electronic publication for brief expert legal insight and analysis on major developments in international law. The following articles have been published on the ICTY in ASIL Insights:

International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR)

Overview of the Court

The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR) was established in 1994 by United Nations Security Council Resolution 955. The ICTR is charged with prosecuting persons responsible for serious violations of international humanitarian law in the territory of Rwanda between January 1, 1994 and December 31, 1994. The ICTR can also prosecute Rwandan citizens who committed such serious crimes in neighboring countries during that same time period.

 

The ICTR is authorized to prosecute persons who committed genocide, crimes against humanity, and serious violations of the 1949 Geneva Conventions. These broad categories of crimes encompass such acts as conspiracy to commit genocide, incitement to genocide, murder, torture, rape, the taking of hostages, and acts of terrorism.

 

The ICTR is organized into three Trial Chambers and one Appeals Chamber. Three permanent judges and a maximum of four ad litem judges comprise each of the Trial Chambers. Seven permanent judges serve as members of the Appeals Chamber. The working languages of the ICTR are English and French.

 

Currently (June 2011), the ICTR has completed fifty-five cases, and has twenty cases in progress. One additional case is awaiting trial.

Basic Documents

The following basic documents of the ICTR are available at the Court’s official website, on the Legal tab.

 

  • Security Council Resolutions
  • Statute of the Tribunal
  • Rules of Procedure and Evidence
  • Practice Directions
  • Directives
  • Code of Professional Conduct for Defense Counsel
  • Rules covering the detention of persons awaiting trial or appeal
  • Prosecutor’s Regulation
  • Bilateral Agreements (headquarters agreement between the UN and Tanzania; agreements on the enforcement of sentences of the ICTR between the UN and Sweden, Italy, France, Swaziland, Benin, Mali, and Rwanda.)

 

In print, see International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, Basic Documents (Arusha: Tanzania: International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, 1999).

Case Law

Cases on the ICTR website. Most up-to-date posting of indictments, decisions, judgments, case minutes, and status of detainees.

 

ICTR Judgment Summaries (American University Washington College of Law).

 

In Westlaw (subscription database requiring a password), ICTR cases are available in the INT-ICTR database.

 

Eric David (ed.), Tribunal pénal international pour le Rwanda: recueil des ordonnances, décisions et arręts, 1995-1997 = International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda Reports of Orders, Decisions and Judgements, 1995-1997 (Bruxelles: Bruylant, 2000). Unlike the ICTY, there is no official print reporter for the ICTR. This volume is one print source for ICTR case law.

Global War Crimes Tribunal Collection (Nijmegen, the Netherlands: Global Law Association, 1997-) This commercial source includes trial transcripts, selected full-text judgments, and other materials.

Selected Print Sources & Links

ICTR Print Sources

  • Thierry Cruvellier, Court of Remorse: Inside the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (Madison, Wis.: University of Wisconsin Press, 2010).
  • Fred Grünfeld and Anke Huijboom, The Failure to Prevent Genocide in Rwanda: The Role of Bystanders (Leiden; Boston: Martinus Nijhoff, 2007).
  • L.J. van den Herik, The Contribution of the Rwanda Tribunal to the Development of International Law (Leiden; Boston: Martinus Nijhoff, 2005).
  • Nicholas A. Jones, The Courts of Genocide: Politics and the Rule of Law in Rwanda and Arusha (New York: Routledge, 2010).
  • Kingsley Chiedu Moghalu, Rwanda’s Genocide: The Politics of Global Justice (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2005).
  • George William Mugwanya, Crime of Genocide in International Law: Appraising the Contribution of the UN Tribunal for Rwanda (London: Cameron May, 2007).
  • Mohamed C. Othman, Accountability for International Humanitarian Law Violations: The Case of Rwanda and East Timor (Berlin: Springer, 2005).
  • Virginia Morris and Michael P. Scharf, The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (Irvington-on-Hudson, NY: Transnational Publishers, 1998).

 

ICTR / Rwanda Links

  • Rwanda Page (African Studies Center at the University of Pennsylvania)
  • Inkiko Gacaca The Rwandan website of “Gacaca Courts,” an alternative justice system in Rwanda. See also Phil Clark, The Gacaca Courts, Post-Genocide Justice and Reconciliation in Rwanda: Justice without Lawyers (Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010).
  • Official Website of the Republic of Rwanda
  • UNAMIR (October 1993 – March 1996) Past U.N. Assistance Mission for Rwanda.
  • AllAfrica.com Comprehensive online African news source.

 

ASIL Insights Coverage
The American Society of International Law publishes ASIL Insights, an electronic publication for brief expert legal insight and analysis on major developments in international law. The following articles have been published on the ICTR in ASIL Insights:

 

Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL)

Overview of the Court Structure

The Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) is a hybrid court established by an agreement between the United Nations and the Government of Sierra Leone on August 14, 2000. The SCSL is authorized to prosecute persons responsible for the most serious crimes committed on the territory of Sierra Leone since November 30, 1996.

 

The SCSL can prosecute persons who committed the following three categories of crimes: crimes against humanity, crimes in violation of international humanitarian law and serious crimes under Sierra Leonean law. The Special Court is made up of at least eight and no more than eleven judges who are organized into a Trial Chamber and an Appeals Chamber. The working language of the court is English.

 

Currently (June 2011), the SCSL has completed the trials of three former Armed Forces Revolutionary Council (AFRC) leaders,  three former Civil Defense Forces (CDF) leaders, and three former Revolutionary United Front (RUF) leaders.  The trial of former Liberian President Charles Taylor is still underway.

 

The trial of  Charles Taylor [New York Times Topics archive] is being conducted in The Hague at the International Criminal Court (ICC) building. Taylor faces an 11-count amended indictment for crimes against humanity, violations of Common Article 3 to the Geneva Conventions and of Additional Protocol II, and other serious violations of international humanitarian law.

 

The AFRC leader Johnny Paul Koroma faces a 17-count indictment issued on 7 March 2003. He is presently at large.

Basic Documents

All basic documents of the SCSL are available at the Court’s official website under the Documents tab.

 

  • Agreement between the United Nations and the Government of Sierra Leone on the Establishment of the Special Court for Sierra Leone (16 January 2002)
  • Statute of the Special Court for Sierra Leone (annexed to the Agreement, 16 January 2002)
  • Special Court Agreement (2002) Ratification Act
  • Rules of Procedure and Evidence
  • Headquarters Agreement between the Republic of Sierra Leone and the Special Court for Sierra Leone
  • Annual Reports
  • Practice Directions and Directives

 

 

The Digest of Jurisprudence of the Special Court for Sierra Leone 2003 – 2005  by Cyril Laucci (Leiden ; Boston : Martinus Nijhoff, 2007) abstracts 548 decisions, orders and judgments rendered by the SCLC that relate to the Statute of the Special Court and the Rules of Procedure and Evidence. The Digest is organized by article and rule number. A second volume of the Digest is intended for publication upon completion of the SCSL’s mandate.

 

There is no official print publication of the SCSL basic documents. One print sources for the SCSL Statute and Rules of Procedure and Evidence is International Criminal Practice (See Multi-Court Sources—Online and In Print, this guide).

 

The Consolidated Legal Texts for the Special Court for Sierra Leone by Charles Jalloh (Leiden, The Netherlands ; Boston : Martinus Nijhoff, 2007) contains the following sections: basic legal texts, regulations of the Special Court for Sierra Leone, Sierra Leonean legislation, and ceasefire and peace agreements.

Case Law

Currently (June 2011), the Charles Taylor case is being heard at the facilities of the International Criminal Court in The Hague, not at the SCSL headquarters in Freetown. The Trial of Charles Taylor Blog, maintained by a monitoring team from the global litigation practice of Clifford Chance LLP, provides news and analysis of the trial as it progresses.

 

Judgments in the AFRC, CDF, and RUF cases are available online.

 

A print source for case law is volume 9, “The Special Court for Sierra Leone 2003-2004” from the series Annotated Leading Cases of International Criminal Tribunals (Antwerpen: Intersentia, 1999-), André Klip and Göran Sluiter (eds.)

Selected Print Sources & Links

SCSL Print Sources

 

Books

C. Tofan, ed., The Sierra Leone Special Court Collection (Oisterwijk, the Netherlands: Aolf Legal Publishers, 2008-)

 

Articles

Despite its nearly eleven-year history, the Special Court has yet to be as extensively explored by scholars as the other courts.  The scholarship available focusing directly on the Special Court can be found primarily in journal articles. Selected articles are listed below and may be electronically available through databases such as Lexis, Westlaw, Academic Search Complete and/or JSTOR.

 

  • Wayne Jordash and Scott Martin, Due Process and Fair Trial Rights at the Special Court: How the Desire for Accountability Outweighed the Demands of Justice at the Special Court for Sierra Leone Leiden Journal of International Law v. 23 (2010) pp. 585-608.
  • Phoebe Knowles, The Power to Prosecute: The Special Court for Sierra Leone from a Defence Perspective International Criminal Law Review v. 6 (2006) pp. 387-417.
  • Vincent O. Nmehielle and Charles Chernor Jalloh, International Criminal Justice: The Legacy of the Special Court for Sierra Leone Fletcher Forum of World Affairs Journal v. 30 (Summer 2006) pp. 107-22.  
  • Noah B. Novogrodsky, Litigating Child Recruitment Before the Special Court for Sierra Leone San Diego International Law Journal v. 7 (Spring 2006) pp. 421-26.
  • Valerie Oosterveld, The Gender Jurisprudence of the Special Court for Sierra Leone: Progress in the Revolutionary United Front Judgments Cornell International Law Journal v. 44 (2011), pp. 49-74.
  • William A. Schabas,  A Synergistic Relationship: The Sierra Leone Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the Special Court for Sierra Leone Criminal Law Forum v. 15 no. 1 / 2 (2004) pp. 3-54.
  • Sandesh Sivakumaran, War Crimes before the Special Court for Sierra Leone: Child Soldiers, Hostages, Peacekeepers and Collective Punishments Journal of International Criminal Justice v. 8 (2010) pp. 1009-34.

 

SCSL / Sierra Leone Links

·       Laws of Sierra Leone Online Selected laws in PDF format, from the 1960s to the present.

 

ASIL Insights Coverage
The American Society of International Law publishes ASIL Insights, an electronic publication for brief expert legal insight and analysis on major developments in international law. The following articles have been published on the SCSL in ASIL Insights:

·       Charles C. Jalloh and Janewa  Osei-Tutu, Prosecutor v. Brima, Kamara, and Kanu: First Judgment from the Appeals Chamber of the Special Court for Sierra Leone (2008).

·       ———, Special Court for Sierra Leone Dismisses Taylor Motion Against Change of Venue (2006).

·       Mark A. Drumbl, Charles Taylor and the Special Court for Sierra Leone (2006).

·       Charles C. Jalloh, Immunity from Prosecution for International Crimes: The Case of Charles Taylor at the Special Court for Sierra Leone (2004).

·       Cesare P.R. Romano and André Nollkaemper, The Arrest Warrant Against The Liberian President, Charles Taylor (2003).

·       Michael P. Scharf, The Special Court for Sierra Leone (2000).

 

Multi-court Sources – online and in print

 

Multi-Court Sources In Print

·       Anne-Marie de Brouwer, Supranational Criminal Prosecution of Sexual Violence: The ICC and the Practice of the ICTY and the ICTR (Antwerpen: Intersentia, 2005).

·       Rodney Dixon, Karim A.A. Kahn and Richard May (eds.), Archbold: International Criminal Courts, Practice, Procedure of Evidence (London: Sweet & Maxwell, 2003).

·       John R.W.D. Jones, International Criminal Practice: The International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia,              the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, the International Criminal Court, the Special Court for Sierra Leone, the East Timor Special Panel for Serious Crimes, War Crimes Prosecutions in Kosovo (Ardsley, NY: Transnational Publishers, 2003).

·       Magda Karagiannakis, Critical Assessments of International Criminal Courts (Annadale, NSW: Federation Press, 2009).

·       André Klip and Göran Sluiter (eds.), Annotated Leading Cases of International Criminal Tribunals (Antwerpen: Intersentia, 1999-).

·       Geert-Jan G.J. Knoops, An Introduction to the Law of International Criminal Tribunals: A Comparative Study (Ardsley: Transnational Publishers, 2003).

·       ———, Surrendering to International Criminal Courts: Contemporary Practice and Procedures (Ardsley: Transnational Publishers, 2002).

·       Victor Peskin, International Justice in Rwanda and the Balkans: Virtual Trials and the Struggle for State Cooperation (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2008).

·       Steven D. Roper and Lilian A. Barria, Designing Criminal Tribunals: Sovereignty and International Concerns in the Protection of Human Rights (Aldershot, England ; Burlington, VT : Ashgate, 2006).

·       William A. Schabas, The UN International Criminal Tribunals: The Former Yugoslavia, Rwanda and Sierra Leone (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006).

·       Birgit Schlütter, Developments in Customary International Law: Theory and the Practice of the International Court of Justice and the International Ad Hoc Tribunals for Rwanda and Yugoslavia (Leiden; Boston: Martinus Nijhoff Press, 2010).

 

Multi-Court Sources Online

·       Project on International Courts and Tribunals (PICT)

·       International Criminal Tribunals (University of Minnesota)

·       War Crimes Research Portal (Case School of Law)

 

Research Institutes & Educational Resources

The Genocide Studies Program at Yale University hosts a Rwandan Genocide Project, a source of articles, maps and the beta version of a victims database.

 

The International War Crimes Project (New England School of Law) Law students are involved in a project to provide legal research and analysis to the Prosecutors of the ICTY and the ICTR.

 

In addition to providing research guides and links, the Frederick K. Cox International Law Center War Crimes Research Portal (Case School of Law) contains the text of over 190 research memoranda on issues pending before the ICTY, ICTR and SCSL.

 

U.C. Berkeley’s War Crimes Studies Center collaborates and supports international tribunals through archiving materials, trial monitoring, education, publications, and research. In addition to covering the SCSL and Rwanda, the War Crimes Studies Center focuses on East Timor, Indonesia, Cambodia and WWII.

Other Research Guides & Bibliographies

·       War Crimes Research Guide (Georgetown University Law Center)

·       International Criminal Law (ASIL)

  • Annette Demers, Women and War: A Bibliography of Recent Works, International Journal of Legal Information v. 34 (Spring 2006) pp. 98-144.