CYIL vol. 12 (2021)

CYIL 12 (2021) Principles of International Criminal Law 4 th edition and left it for the judges to deal with, the Rome Statute is significantly more clear. However, knowing its sources and principles behind the ideas (and sometimes their omission) is of course important to understand them. In relation to mens rea under the Rome Statute and its general provision in Article 30 of the RS, the authors provide a handy description of the evolution of the ICC’s case law which was firstly inspired by the ad hoc tribunals (and thus accepted the dolus eventualis ) and then the ICC rightly corrected its mistake by confirming that the Rome Statute’s terms “intent and knowledge” only cover direct intent of first and second degree (though in some domestic legal regimes’ terminology the second degree of direct intent is called indirect intent, however still on the level of virtual certainty of the foresight of consequences, thus excluding the “only” likelihood in dolus eventualis ). On page 218, the authors claim that consequences need to be covered by both intent and knowledge. I would counter that (actually in line with their following text) that the correct statement would be that consequences may be covered by intent or knowledge as knowledge is described in Article 30(2) and (3) of the RS as awareness on the level of virtual certainty of the consequences occurring. That is however a minor issue in an otherwise very well written chapter helpful to anyone working on understanding the mens rea in the Rome Statute. Quite a significant development has been observed by vigilant readers (including authors of the reviewed book) of the ICC case law in recent years in the sphere of forms of responsibility as the publication observes. Though in the end leading to acquittal, the case of Jean Pierre Bemba Gombo contributed significantly to the institutes of commander’s responsibility for example. Similarly, though in theory, the crime of aggression added the (quite controversial) requirement of being in a position of effective control/direction of political/military activities of a state to both the principals as well as accessories under Article 25(3) of the RS. Last but not least, the concept of (joint) indirect co-perpetration is dealt with as it made some authors of doctrine literally furious (possibly for a good reason). Without much doubt, it may be stated that the matter of immunities of state officials from foreign criminal jurisdiction has been a topic that every international criminal lawyer has been interested in over the last decade. The ICC Appeal Chamber’s judgment regarding Jordan’s noncompliance with the RS in the al Bashir case culminated these discussions so far. But it is definitely not the last word said in that regard. The chapter also distinguishes (which is unfortunately not that usual) the immunities of various kinds of state officials. It further elaborates on the distinction between functional and personal immunities in a very structured way and thus may serve as a useful explanation for both professionals as well as non-lawyers and students. In the aftermath of the al Bashir judgment, the authors present both compliant as well as noncompliant arguments. Though the space requirements for this topic would probably be exceeded (and so I understand its omission), I would also like to read more about the authors’ opinion as to whether customary international law indeed contains an automatic waiver of personal immunity for prosecution in front of an international court when crimes under international law were committed (pp. 319-320). The answer is hinted to later on page 320 but the question posed by many authors is simple: was the Appeals Chamber right? The reviewed publication offers a well-arranged summary of the above-mentioned (and other) topics and presents interesting conclusions. Chapter 3 deals with the crime of genocide. Its definition was taken verbatim from the UN Genocide Convention to many other sources, including the Statutes of the ICTY, ICTR,


Made with FlippingBook - Online catalogs