State Responsibility v. Individual Responsibility for International Crimes: Tertium Non Datur?
Author: Spinedi, Marina
Source: European Journal of International Law, Volume 13, Number 4, September 2002 , pp. 895-899(5)
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Abstract:The ICJ held in the recent Congo v. Belgium case that a former Minister for Foreign Affairs of a state may be subjected to the criminal jurisdiction of another state only in respect of acts carried out ‘in a private capacity’. Therefore the question arises of whether international crimes committed by persons with the status of state officials are to be regarded as acts done ‘in a private capacity’. This article argues that the answer to this question should be in the negative. Treating war crimes or crimes against humanity perpetrated by a state official as acts committed ‘in a private capacity’ would mean that such acts could not be attributed to the state at an international level. As a consequence, the state would not be responsible for those acts under international law.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: 2002-09-01
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