Humanitarian Action Through Legal Institutions

Authored by: Michael Kearney

The Routledge Companion to Humanitarian Action

Print publication date:  March  2015
Online publication date:  March  2015

Print ISBN: 9780415844420
eBook ISBN: 9780203753422
Adobe ISBN: 9781135013936


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The United Nations Security Council has the power to accord the International Criminal Court (ICC) jurisdiction over states that haven’t ratified the Rome Statute, which established the Court. Unsurprisingly, use of the veto mechanism by the Council’s permanent members has stymied several efforts to allow the Court to take humanitarian action by investigating ongoing human rights abuses in the territory of non-states parties. This chapter proposes an alternative mechanism whereby, in the face of such deadlock and with evidence of serious criminality, the UN’s General Assembly may be empowered to authorise the referral of a non-state party to the Court.

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