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Part III Prosecutorial Policy and Practice, 13 Putting Complementarity in its Place

Paul Seils

From: The Law and Practice of the International Criminal Court

Edited By: Carsten Stahn

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved.date: 26 March 2023

Prosecution — Armed conflict — International crimes

The ICC has been less effective than might have been hoped in promoting national prosecutions, and this chapter argues that there are two reasons for this. In the first place, the Court has been used largely as a tactical instrument aimed at affecting ongoing crimes or in dealing with shorter-term interests from self-referring states. Second, even where the Court is able to act strategically with a view to promoting national action, the nature of what it can do and how it should do it is sometimes misunderstood or misapplied. The chapter focuses on a number of recalibrations that can help to reframe expectations. It examines in particular, ways to strengthen complementarity and the use of the phase of ICC preliminary examination by the OTP.

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