The International Criminal Court and Mali: Towards More Transparency in International Criminal Law Investigations?
The author takes a closer look at the Situation in Mali and the Office of the Prosecutor (OTP)’s initiation of full investigations on the basis of article 53(1) ICC Statute. In accordance with OTP Regulation 29(1), the OTP produces so-called ‘article 53’ reports that analyze the legal position in conflict situations that are under pre-investigation against the background of the following legal criteria: jurisdiction; admissibility; and the interest of justice. These reports give an analytical basis for the Chief Prosecutor to render a positive or negative decision on whether a certain conflict reaches the level of formal criminal investigations. In Mali, the Chief Prosecutor took the fast lane, passing by several other situations that have been under pre-investigation for a longer period of time. To a certain extent, as will be outlined in this contribution, this can be explained by the self-referral mechanism and certain particularities in Mali. However, some selective choices remain the OTP’s mystery, covert due to the nebulosity of ‘gravity’.
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