Lunch seminar with Shingirai Mtero

Wednesday 22 November 2017

iLab - room 6B-4-66, Faculty of Law, Njalsgade 76, DK-2300 Copenhagen S

Rethinking the Rome Statute: The Unique case of the International Criminal Court and the African Court of Justice and Human Rights.


The establishment of the International Criminal Court (ICC) remains one of the crowning achievements of global governance in the new millennium. While the establishment of a permanent court to preside over the most grave humanitarian crimes is a vital component of the international system, its operations have not gone without criticism. The ICC has frequently been accused of being ‘political’ or ‘politicised’ in its selection, prosecution and dismissal of cases. African leaders have been the most vehement critics of the court, accusing the Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) of an ‘African bias’. While the OTP has had cases referred to it from State Parties across the globe, it has chosen to only prosecute cases in Africa, except for the Situation in Georgia. These African cases have been selected while other critical humanitarian crises in other parts if the world, such as Syria and Afghanistan, have been neglected.

In June 2014, the African Union (AU) took a vital step toward operationalizing The African Court of Justice and Human Rights (ACJHR) by adopting the Draft Protocol on Amendments to the Protocol on the Statute of the African Court of Justice and Human Rights - The Malabo Protocol.  The Malabo Protocol legally empowers the ACJHR to preside over crimes that are currently under the exclusive jurisdiction of the ICC, through the Rome Statute. While the establishment of the ACJHR has been criticized as a reactionary measure to the volatile relationship between African states and the ICC, its legal provisions signal a significant structural shift in international law. Additionally, its operationalization will hold numerous potential concerns for the practice and conceptualisation of international criminal justice in the 21st century.

Operating concurrently with the Malabo Protocol, the Rome Statute would no longer enjoy exclusive jurisdiction over the most grave humanitarian crimes. As such, the space it occupies (in a both a practical and conceptual sense) would require re-thinking and re-structuring to accommodate these changes. This paper will explore these structural shifts (both legal and political) and the conceptual/normative shifts that the concurrent

All interested are welcome to attend. Registration is not necessary.