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International Criminals: Extradition or Prosecution?

Event Documents

Participants

Dr Miša Zgonec-Rožej, Associate Fellow, International Law Programme, Chatham House
Joanne Foakes, Associate Fellow, International Law Programme, Chatham House
Discussant: Ambassador Kriangsak Kittichaisaree, Member, International Law Commission of the United Nations; Chairman, ILC Working Group on the Obligation to Extradite or Prosecute
Chair: Elizabeth Wilmshurst CMG, Associate Fellow, International Law Programme, Chatham House

Overview

As international courts struggle with a lack of resources and insufficient powers, national courts - if they can undertake trials fairly and effectively - may be better placed to try perpetrators of international crimes. But in what circumstances is there an obligation on states to try offenders or extradite them to states that will do so?

At the heart of the recent case before the International Court of Justice concerning the prosecution of Hissene Habre for alleged torture while President of Chad, and currently on the agenda of the International Law Commission, the question of an obligation to extradite or prosecute is central to the relationship between national and international legal systems in the implementation of international criminal justice.

This meeting launches a briefing paper which discusses the options and obligations in international law.

The event will be followed by an open drinks reception from 19:00.