Date: 10 Jul 2013

The ICC’s Practice on Victim Participation

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This contribution describes the current practice of victim participation at the pre-trial, trial and interlocutory appeals phases of criminal proceedings before the ICC. By briefly addressing prior developments, crucial decisions are discussed and differences in the approach of Chambers pointed out. The author analyses the application process and how, in practice, victims participate in the proceedings. It appears that there are basically two categories of victim participation. Rights granted by an affirmative decision on the application for participation belong to the first category. The second category requires a specific (second) application to participate in a particular way in the proceedings. Within the context of the latter category, the Chambers’ approaches to victims as witnesses and victims and evidence are explained.

The author is Legal Officer in the Appeals Chamber of the International Criminal Court. Any views expressed in this contribution are those of the author alone and not those of the ICC. This contribution was delivered as a speech at the conference “Victims of International Crimes” held in Marburg, Germany, between 6 and 8 October 2011. The article refers mainly to decisions issued until September 2012. The author thanks Eleni Chaitidou for her comments and Erin Rosenberg for her careful reading. Reference is made to the decisions and judgments of the ICC by mentioning the situation or case name and the document number, and, where applicable, the Chamber (PTC, TC, AC). Reference to the Appeals Chamber jurisprudence is also made by “OA”-numbers (see regulation 26 (3) of the Regulations of the Registry).