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Analysis of Practice and of Relevant Scholarly Writing

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Chapter Summary

The decisions of international criminal courts and tribunals confirm the autonomy of general principles of law as a formal source of international law, that is, a source distinct from international conventions and custom. Moreover, general principles of law are a meaningful material source of international criminal law. Considering that the ICTY has suggested that there are three different sets of general legal principles, the issue arises whether there are substantial differences between them. The question in this chapter is whether international criminal courts and tribunals have transposed and applied general principles of law directly or whether, in contrast, they have found legal obstacles hindering the transposition and subsequent application of general principles of law at the international level.

Keywords: general principles of law; ICTY; international criminal courts; international criminal law; tribunals

10.1163/ej.9789004170476.i-214.21
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