Universal jurisdiction: state of affairs and ways ahead. A policy paper
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On 17 September 2010, the International Institute of Social Studies (ISS), Leiden University and ICCO organised an expert meeting at the ISS on universal jurisdiction (UJ). The meeting was chaired in the morning by Professor John Dugard and in the afternoon by Professor Karin Arts. The aim of the meeting was to analyse the possibilities and challenges faced in universal jurisdiction cases, and more broadly, the capacity of national legal jurisdictions to prosecute and/or otherwise hold accountable individuals and companies for (complicity in) international crimes. To that end, the meeting brought together academics and practitioners who have been working in the area of international criminal law and individual and corporate accountability. This policy paper is a report of the September 2010 meeting, which consisted of two sessions. The morning session covered Dutch jurisprudence concerning universal jurisdiction and focussed on specific cases. The afternoon session highlighted political and social themes and took a more comparative approach. Although the outcomes of the meeting were embedded in the Dutch context, they also reached out to other jurisdictions. We wish to add a caveat that this policy paper is very much work-inprogress and draws on our personal reflections and impressions from this meeting. It is by no means intended as a verbatim record of the meeting. This policy brief is intended to stimulate critical discussion on this important issue and therefore no attribution should be implied or assumed on the part of any contributor to this report or the institutions they are affiliated with, including the principal contributors. We nevertheless welcome your feedback and further contributions.
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