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Particular issues regarding war crimes in internal armed conflicts

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Chapter Summary

That the International Criminal Court (ICC) should have jurisdiction over violations of the laws and customs applicable during international armed conflict was never seriously questioned. A number of participants nonetheless opposed ICC jurisdiction over internal armed conflicts. They believed that it would undermine attempts at universal acceptance of the Statute, and that the existence of individual criminal responsibility for such violations had not been clearly demonstrated. Equally difficult was the issue of which humanitarian norms should be applicable during internal armed conflict. If the laws of internal armed conflict are to be enforced against individuals, it is vital to know when an internal armed conflict actually exists. De Than and Shorts express a measure of concern that case law from the ICTY would seem to exclude the possibility that terrorist activity could ever constitute an armed conflict.

Keywords: ICTY; internal armed conflicts; International Criminal Court (ICC)



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