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Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law [MPEPIL]

Aut dedere aut iudicare

Michael P Scharf

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2015. All Rights Reserved.date: 23 September 2019

Subject(s):
Right to fair trial — Judicial assistance — Extradition and mutual assistance — Aut dedere aut judicare — Prosecution — Genocide — Customary international law — Peremptory norms / ius cogens

Published under the auspices of the Max Planck Foundation for International Peace and the Rule of Law under the direction of Rüdiger Wolfrum.

1 Enforcement of international criminal law is entrusted primarily to States, under a formula known as aut dedere aut iudicare , meaning extradite or prosecute. This formula was first suggested by Hugo Grotius, who in 1625 wrote: The state…ought to do one of two things … It should either punish the guilty person as he deserves, or it should entrust him to the discretion of the party making the appeal. This latter course is rendition … [A] people or king is not absolutely bound to surrender a culprit, but …either to surrender or to punish him. (At 526–28.) 2 Under...
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