By Benjamin Duerr*
The ICC Dictionary is a guide for everyone interested in the proceedings in The Hague. It contains almost 200 of the most important terms and concepts with short explanations in alphabetical order. Justice Hub is presenting a selection of some of the terms highlighted by the Dictionary.
Under national law presidents, diplomats and other high-ranking officials of a state enjoy immunity from criminal prosecution. The Rome Statute, however, does not recognise immunities for the crimes mentioned in the Statute. This means that everyone can be prosecuted for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. Article 27 reads that the Statute “shall apply equally to all persons without any distinction based on official capacity.” Therefore, the ICC can also prosecute presidents or other high-ranking officials. In 2009, the Court indicted Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir, and in 2013, a trial against Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto began.
*Benjamin Duerr is a correspondent and foreign reporter covering the International Criminal Court and the war crimes tribunals in The Hague.