State-sponsored oppression - Essay Example

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State-sponsored oppression

International individual criminal liability is, in essence, the ascribing of responsibility for certain crimes against individuals in an international forum. The crimes for which individuals may be held responsible are not simply ordinary crimes of theft or of reckless imprudence. They must be of such a nature that they invite universal condemnation. They are considered erga omnes obligations, or obligations owed to the world. Examples of these are piracy, genocide, crimes against humanity and slavery. According to Kelsen, “The offenses for which retribution may be claimed are, in the first place, violations of international law committed by having resorted to war in disregard of general or particular international law.” (1943)

In a manner of speaking, the assigning of individual criminal responsibility in the international sphere is a huge departure from traditional conceptions of international law. Pursuant to Article 34 of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) Statute, “only states may be parties in cases before the Court.” In the famous Nottebohm case, such principle was likewise applied with the International Court of Justice held that only a state may seek redress for crimes or offenses perpetrated against its citizens, and the “nexus of nationality” must be established between the state seeking redress and the citizen for whom it seeks redress. However, in view of the atrocities being committed by individuals, the concept of international individual criminal liability emerged. ...
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This paper “State-sponsored oppression” will argue that conception of international law is anachronistic in light of the atrocities committed by individuals that deserve punishment in the international regime. The international legal system is a subject of an international law dispute…

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