Time, Legacy and New Research in International Criminal Justice

On 13 June 2015, Prof Carsten Stahn delivered a paperon ‘Re-constructing History Through Courts: Legacy in International Criminal Justice’ at the Conference on International Law and Time, held by the International Law Department of the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva.
In his intervention, he addressed the relationship between time and legacy approaches of international criminal courts and tribunals. He argued that Court-mandated legacy involves social construction and claims of ownership over the past that sit uncomfortably with the thicker fabric of remembrance and collective memory. He suggested a five-fold typology of legacy, based on differentiation between juridified legacy, institutional/systemic legacy, performative legacy, re-productive legacy and receptive legacy. This research complements a comprehensive new volume on theLaw and Practice of the International Criminal Court (Oxford University Press), which provides a systematic account of the Court’s case-law, practices and policies.

University of Cologne wins the Final Round of the Telders International Law Moot Court Competition

Congratulations to the Winners of the Telders International Law Moot Court Competition 2015: The University of Cologne!

The Final Round took place in the Academy Hall of the Peace Palace. The Finalist Team was the Democritus University of Thrace, Greece.

Judge Peter Tomka, Judge Xue Hanqin and Judge Giorgio Gaja were the members of the Final Bench.

All pictures of the Telders MC 2015 on facebook

Roundtable 23 March 2015 - Reparations and the ICC: The Lubanga Judgment and Future Prospects for Victims

Panel members:

  • Pieter de Baan: Executive Director, Trust Fund for Victims
  • Paolina Massidda: Principal Counsel for the Office of Public Counsel for Victims
  • Luc Walleyn: Legal Representative for Victims in the case against Thomas Lubanga
  • Gaelle Carayon: ICC Legal Officer, Redress Trust
  • Luke Moffett: Lecturer, School of Law, Queen's University Belfast
  • Dov Jacobs: Assistant Professor, Leiden University
Chair: Prof. dr. Carsten Stahn, Leiden University

The Hague Academy of International Law and the Grotius Centre launch a new Advanced Course on International Criminal Law

The Grotius Centre is very pleased that the first session of a new Advanced Course on International Criminal Law, developed in cooperation with The Hague Academy of International Law, with the support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, will be held at the Peace Palace from 24 August to 4 September 2015. This year's Special Focus of the course will be on Gender Justice.
Confirmed faculty includes ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda, ICTY Prosecutor Serge Brammertz, Prof. M. Cherif Bassiouni, Judge Theodor Meron, Brigid Inder, Patricia Sellers, Dr. Kelly Askin and Prof. William Schabas. Read more

Reconciliation v. Accountability: Balancing Interests of Peace and Justice, Peace Palace, The Hague, 29 May 2015

The Centre for International Law Research and Policy, the Royal Norwegian Embassy in The Hague, Leiden University, Peking University International Law Institute, and O.P. Jindal Global University organized a seminar on the relationship between criminal justice accountability and truth and reconciliation commissions, and   expectations of war crimes trials. Judge Erik Møse (European Court of Human Rights, formerly ICTR President) gave the 2015 LI Haopei Lecture on "The ICTR and Reconciliation in Rwanda”, after which five other experts discussed whether specific criminal jurisdictions for core international crimes have contributed to reconciliation. 

Maastricht University wins Jessup National Round

Maastricht University and Utrecht University competed in the final round of the Dutch National Round for  the Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition. Maastricht University was announced the winner by the Final Bench, consisting of Judges Willibrord Davids, Bart Vis and Matthew Gillett, and will compete at the International Rounds in Washington in April.

John Dugard lecture presented by Judge Kenneth Keith

On Monday 19 January, H.E. Judge Kenneth Keith of the International Court of Justice presented the annual John Dugard Lecture, 'The International Rule of Law' at Campus The Hague.


Children's Rights Moot Court Competition

The Law Society of Ireland won the final round of the very first edition of the Children's Rights Moot Court Competition.
At the CRM 2014 competition, fifteen student-teams from nine different countries pleaded ‘The of AW vs. Landia' involving a fictitious individual petition brought before an International Court on the Rights of the Child. 
The CRM was jointly organized by the Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies and the Department of Child Law of Leiden University, with the support of UNICEF and the Municipality of Leiden.
The CRM 2014 was a successful three-day event, consisting of two days of preliminary rounds on 18 and 19 November at the Sterrewacht in Leiden. The final round on Thursday 20 November was held at the Child Rights Home in Leiden. Judges on the final bench were H.E. Judge Joyce Aluoch of the ICC, H.E. Judge Flavia Lattanzi and H.E. Judge Mandiaye Niang of the UN ICTY. 

Pictures of the CRM 2014

Benjamin Ferencz at Leiden Law School

From 1-5 September Benjamin Ferencz (94) visited the Leiden Law School. He was invited for a special one-day event organized for all 2nd year law students, devoted to the theme ‘ethical dilemmas in war and peace’. In 1947-1948 Ferencz was the chief prosecutor in one of the so-called follow-up Nuremberg trials, the Einsatzgruppen trial.

During his long life he has published extensively and has participated in international negotiations on the definition of aggression and on the crime of aggression. See for further information his website.

Following an inspiring presentation in movie theatre Trianon on 1 September he answered questions from some of the 200 second year law students who were present and had discussions with them. On 3 September Ferencz spoke in the Academy building during an unforgettable meeting with the new group of 38 Advanced LLM Public International Law students, please see thevideo of this meeting. On 5 September he spoke in the Lorentz lecture hall for academic staff. In between these presentations, Ferencz had interviews (with Mare, Leidsch Dagblad, NRC and Deutschlandradio) and meetings with ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda, judges and staff of the ICC, and with the President of the ICTY.

Book Launch

It was a full house on 30 April at the joint launch of two important books, Jus Post Bellum: Mapping the Normative Foundations, edited by Professor Carsten StahnJennifer S. Easterday, and Jens Iverson (all members of faculty at the Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies) and Proportionality in International Lawwritten byProfessor Michael A. Newton and Professor Larry May. The first volumeprovides a detailed understanding of the development and nature of jus post bellum as a concept, including its foundations, criticisms, and relationship to related concepts (such as transitional justice, and the responsibility to protect). The second critically assesses the law of proportionality in a uniquely interdisciplinary way. The crowd was treated to interesting presentations by Professor Naomi Roht Arriaza, Distinguished Professor of Law, University of California, Hastings College of the Law, and Judge Howard Morrison, Judge of the International Criminal Court and International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, as well as a panel with editors Professor Carsten Stahn, Jennifer S. Easterday, Jens Iverson, and author Professor Michael A. Newton.

New Grotius Centre publication on Jus Post Bellum

The Jus Post Bellum project is glad to announce the publication of anew work by Oxford University Press (‘Jus Post Bellum: Mapping the Normative Foundations’) which examines the content and normative foundations of jus post bellum. The book (edited by Carsten Stahn,Jennifer Easterday and Jens Iverson) provides a modern account of core concepts underlying transitions from conflict to peace, i.e. the law ('jus'), temporal aspects of application ('post'), and the nexus of the concept to peace and different types of armed conflict ('bellum'). The volume examines the development and nature of jus post bellum, including its foundations, criticisms, and relationship to related concepts (e.g., transitional justice, responsibility to protect). It investigates the relationship of the concept to jus ad bellum andjus in bello, and its relevance in internal armed conflicts and peacebuilding. It reviews contemporary approaches towards ending of conflict, including indicators for the end of conflict, exit strategies, and institutional responses. It seeks to clarify emerging norms, principles and practices, drawing on disparate bodies and sources of international law such as peace agreements, treaty law, self-determination, norms governing peace operations and the status of foreign armed forces, environmental law, human rights, and amnesty law. The volume contains 26 chapters written by leading experts, including several Leiden scholars (Eric de BrabandereDov Jacobs and Freya Baetens). It was made possible by a Vidi grant of the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research. For follow-up activities of the Jus Post Bellum project on‘Peacebuilding and Environmental Damage’ and ‘Property and Investment’ in June 2014, see here.

Leiden Fact-Finding Project discussed Future of Human Rights Fact-Finding at New York University

On 1-2 November 2013, NYU’s Center for Human Rights and Global Justice hosted a conference entitled ‘Human Rights Fact-Finding in the Twenty-first Century’. The Grotius Centre contributed two papers to the conference which form part of the fact-finding project of the Centre, carried out in cooperation with the Hague Institute for Global JusticeProf. dr. Larissa van den Herik and Catherine Harwood spoke about the impact of the use of international criminal law as a normative framework by international commissions of inquiry.Prof. dr. Carsten Stahn and Dov Jacobs discussed the interaction between human rights fact-finding and international criminal proceedings. The conference also explored possibilities offered by new technologies to investigate alleged human rights violations; issues of politics and imperialism; roles of victims and witnesses; fact-finding in advocacy, enforcement, and litigation; and the utility of fact-finding guidelines. One of the outputs of the conference is a volume of essays to be edited by Philip Alston and Sarah Knuckey.

21 November 2013    |Panel Discussion ''Contemporary Challenges in IHL"

The Kalshoven-Gieskes Forum held a panel discussion on ‘Contemporary Challenges in International Humanitarian Law’ on Thursday, 21 November 2013 at Leiden Law School. Speakers included Prof. Geoffrey Corn, Prof. Mike Schmitt and Prof. Gabriella Venturini. More details: flyer.

22 and 23 November 2013    |Expert workshop: "The Conduct of Hostilities under International Humanitarian Law - Challenges of 21st Century Warfare” 

On 22 and 23 November 2013, the Kalshoven-Gieskes Forum on International Humanitarian Law and the Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies, in cooperation with the University of Amsterdam and the University of Glasgow, hosted an expert workshop of about 20 international renowned academics, who are members of the International Law Association’s study group on the "Conduct of Hostilities under International Humanitarian Law - Challenges of 21st Century Warfare”. The experts met to discuss possible solutions to problems such as the use of new technologies in armed conflict, like drones and autonomous weapons, the relationship between law enforcement operations and regular warfare, and the challenges posed by the fight against terrorism. The results of this expert process will be presented to the other members of the ILA at their next meeting in Washington in April 2014. 

12 June 2013    |Leiden Journal of International Law prize workshop

On the 12th of June, the  Leiden Journal of International Law organized the first LJIL prize workshop during which the article of the laureate Richard Collins, ‘Constitutionalism as Liberal-Juridical Consciousness: Echoes from International Law’s Past’, will be discussed by Erika de Wet and Jure Vidmar. 

30 May 2013  |Panel Discussion  Cyber Warfare and International Law


The Kalshoven-Gieskes Forum on International Humanitarian Law and the International Law Association Prof. Mr. B.M. Telders hosted a Panel Discussion on cyber warfare and international law. This panel discussion follows the recent completion of the Tallinn Manual on the International Law Applicable to Cyber Warfare.

Prof. Dr. Terry Gill (University of Amsterdam and the Neth. Def. Ac) and Colonel Paul Ducheine Ph.D. (Neth. Def. Ac and the University of Amsterdam) will discuss to what extent the Tallinn Manual will give adequate solutions for the next generation of wars.

26 April 2013  | Leiden wins ICC Trial Compeition 2013 - 'if the price of peace is justice, perhaps that price is too high'

On 26 April 2013, Leiden won the final round of the ICC Trial Competition 2013, held at the International Criminal Court before an international Bench, including ICC Judge Morrison. The team was composed of members of our Adv. and Regular LL.M. programme in Public International Law: John Doyle, Sophie Beelaerts van Blokland, Uzay Aysev, Alexander Wills, Joe Holt, Daniel Huck and Adrian Plevin. It was successfully coached by Daniel Huck and Christian De Lance Vos. The case dealt inter alia with ‘forced marriage’ as an international crime, jurisdictional issues and complementarity. Acting as representative of victims in the final, Leiden argued that if peace were to come at the expense of justice in the case, this would be a too high price to pay. Earlier this year, our team won the national Dutch qualifying round. The rounds leading up to finals were hosted in the new premises of Leiden University - Campus The Hague in Schouwburgstraat. A press release and photographs are on the website of theInternational Criminal Court.

27 April 2013  |  Leiden University wins Telders International Law Moot Court Competition 

In addition, Leiden University also won the awards for Best Overall Score; Best Oral Argumentation for the Respondent and Best Oralist. 

  On 27 April 2013, the Leiden University team won the final round of the 36th edition of the prestigious Telders International Law Moot Court Competition, held in The Hague from 25 to 27 April 2013. Leiden University was represented by Amin Benaissa, Ross Galvin, Emmy Heijmans and Tríona Jacob, all Master students in Leiden University’s Public International Law program. The team was coached by Dr. Erik Koppe and Andrea Varga. 

17 May 2013  |  Discrimination as experienced by LGBTs in the EU

On Friday afternoon 17 May 2013, Leiden University (Campus The Hague) hosted the seminar "Discrimination as experienced by Europe’s LGBTs – How adequate is the existing legal framework?” Legal experts will give their first analysis of the results of the biggest survey ever done on discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity.

The seminar is being organised by professor Kees Waaldijk , in cooperation with the EU Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA). Earlier that day the FRA will present the results of their survey among 93,000 lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders in the member states of the EU. At the seminar, the experts will discuss with the audience, whether existing legal tools are sufficient to combat violence and discrimination as experienced by these groups. They will also speak about the legal possibilities and obstacles for same-sex couples to  formalize  their relationships, to raise children or to move to another EU country. 

27 February  2013 | Dutch Regional Round ICC Trial Competition won by Leiden University


The Leiden University ICC Trial Competition team, assisted by the Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies, has won the Dutch Regional Round on 27 February 2013 in competition against University of Amsterdam and Utrecht University. The team consisting of Uzay Aysev, Sophie Beelaerts, John Doyle, Joe Holt and Alex Wills, along with their coach Daniel Huck will now advance to the international final round of the competition to be held at the Academy Building of Leiden University Campus Den Haag during the last week of April 2013. The Leiden University team members come from five different countries who are pursuing both the regular and advanced LL.M degrees in Public International Law.  

2013| Prof. Kees Waaldijk in Hanoi to speak about same-sex family law

The Vietnamese Ministry of Justice is developing plans to include same-sex partners in the Law on Marriage and ?Familiy. In this context it organised a conference, where the Leiden Law School professor of Comparative Sexual Orientation Law was one of the speakers. Read more.



25 January 2013 | Inaugural Lecture Professor William Schabas


William Schabas professor of International criminal law and human rights delivered his inaugural lecture 'The Three Charters: Making International Law in the Post-War Crucible' on 25 January 2013.



  4 December 2012| Lecture D.D. Caron - Framing the work of ICSID Annulment Committees


On December 4, D.D. Caron, C. William Maxeiner Distinguished Professor of Law at the University of Berkley and Hague Chair on the Rule of Law at HiiL, gave a lecture at the Grotius Centre on ICSID Annulment Committees. Read more .




26-27 September 2012| Conference The Law and Practice of International Criminal law


On September 26-27, 2012, the Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies, with the support of the Open Society Justice Initiative and the MacArthur Foundation, hosted a two-day conference on "The Law and Practice of the International Criminal Court.” With the ICC a decade into its operations, the conference evaluated the Court’s institutional and jurisprudential developments to date, and sought to reflect upon the challenges the Court has faced in meeting its ambitious mandate. In addition to bringing together key academics and practitioners within the field of international criminal law, the conference featured presentations from organizations and individuals who are working within such ICC situation countries as Kenya, Uganda, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. READ MORE.

31 May - 1 June| Jus Post Bellum Project

On 31 May and 1 June 2012, the Jus post Bellum Project was proud to host its launch conference, "Jus - Post - Bellum': Mapping the normative foundations." It was held at the Peace Palace. The conference aimed to clarify the meaning and content of the concept, including contemporary understandings and criticisms and historical and modern approaches towards the definitions of key notions. The launch conference included five panels: Situating the Concept, Mapping the Normative Framework(s), the Politics and Practice of Jus Post Bellum, Temporal Dimensions of Jus Post Bellum, and The 'Jus' in 'Jus Post Bellum.' There was also a roundtable discussion on 'At War's End,' by Larry May. Read more.





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