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Part VI Impact, ‘Legacy’, and Lessons Learned, 47 The Deterrent Effect of the ICC on the Commission of International Crimes by Government Leaders

Nick Grono, Anna de Courcy Wheeler

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: 31 March 2023

International crimes — Prosecution

This Chapter examines in which circumstances, and under what conditions, the prospect of prosecution by the ICC may act to curtail the actions of government or rebel leaders by shifting the strategic calculus in favour of avoiding war crimes or crimes against humanity. It studies ICC engagement and its impact in Uganda, the DRC, Colombia, Sudan, Kenya, and Mali. It argues that success or failure of ICC deterrence rests to a large degree on its ability to pursue successful prosecutions. It concludes that potential to deter future atrocity crimes may not exist in all cases, and probably not in the midst of armed conflict, but could exist in those situations where the commission of crimes is one of a series of policy options available to a leader facing a challenge to his or her authority.

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