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Part V Key Actors, Ch.32 Defense Counsel in International Criminal Trials

Kate Gibson

From: The Oxford Handbook of International Adjudication

Edited By: Cesare P R Romano, Karen Alter, Yuval Shany

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2015. All Rights Reserved.date: 03 December 2020

Choice of counsel — Witnesses — Defences — Prosecution — International criminal law, victims — Political violence
“There is hardly a more unpopular job than defending a person accused of genocide.”1 Despite defense lawyers being an indispensible fixture in criminal trials, public opinion still ascribes a moral complicity to lawyers representing “genocidaires” or “war criminals.” A Judge of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) observed that witnesses “see defense counsel allied with their nemeses in the docks.”2 This is an uncomfortable stigma for lawyers who are familiar with being afforded the same measure of respect, regardless of the role...
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