Mass Atrocities in Syria – Does the path to justice run through Europe?
Deliberate attacks on civilian infrastructure, indiscriminate bombings and the torture and execution of civilians are just some of the crimes committed by almost all conflict parties in Syria since 2011. Syrian activists have been documenting these crimes in order to one day bring those responsible to justice.
There is little prospect of accountability on an international level. The International Criminal Court is not an option as Syria is not a signatory to its statute and Russia is blocking a referral by the UN Security Council. With the principle of Universal Jurisdiction, however, there is a tool for third states to prosecute perpetrators domestically. Prosecutors in Germany and other EU countries are currently monitoring, investigating and prosecuting human rights related crimes in Syria.
The well-known Syrian human rights lawyer Anwar al-Bunni and Dr. Patrick Kroker, lawyer for the European Center for Constitutional and Human Rights (ECCHR) in Berlin will present their joint actions for and the meaning of criminal accountability for the crimes committed in Syria.
Pluricourts holds a monthly international criminal law (ICL) lunch, where an invited ICL expert gives a presentation on a topic of their choice, followed by questions from the audience. The aim is to provide a wide-ranging lecture series, giving varied insights into what is happening within the field of ICL today. We invite speakers from different backgrounds, and have had presentations from Norwegian- based and international academics, as well as speakers from local agencies who work with ICL-related issues, such as Kripos and the Norwegian Red Cross. The lunches also function as a meeting point for those who are interested in ICL, allowing for ideas to be exchanged and developed. They are open to the public, and are attended by staff, students and those working in ICL in the Oslo area.