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East Timor: A Critique of the Model of Accountability for Serious Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law Violations

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The article examines the model of accountability for international humanitarian law violations committed in East Timor in 1999, in which the Security Council opted for parallel accountability,in East Timor and Indonesia. In the former, it is anchored on a 'mixed' judicial process, administered by 'Special Panels' of the Dili District Court composed of national and international judges. Although its legal framework is sound, and persons 'most responsible' have been indicted, the allocated resources were meager, desired full accountability overambitious, and most accused remain at large. In Indonesia, the ad hoc Human Rights Court's framework is laden withjurisdictional loopholes, and the conduct of prosecutions non-diligent, reflecting 'unwillingness or inability', genuinely to account. If that process had been under the ICC regime, it would have been a valid ground for seizure of jurisdiction by that court. The net result of the model is a misjoinder of human rights perpetrators.


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