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The International Criminal Court: Building On The Principal Legal Systems Of The World

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Chapter Summary

The creation of the International Criminal Court (ICC) was preceded by the international military tribunals setup after World War II at Nuremberg and Tokyo and the international criminal tribunals set up in response to genocides and other serious crimes in the former Yugoslavia and Rwanda in the 1990s. The International Law Commission is a body of experts, falling under the General Assembly, charged with the progressive development and codification of international law. Its 34 experts are elected by the General Assembly, bearing in mind the need to assure "representation of the main forms of civilization and of the principal legal systems of the world". The Court's jurisdictional regime is closely tied to its treaty-based nature and reflects principles of criminal law common to diverse legal systems. One of the most fundamental and innovative aspects of the ICC is the "principle of complementarity".

Keywords: General Assembly; International Criminal Court (ICC); International Law Commission; jurisdiction; principal legal systems; principle of complementarity



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