Mass grave west of Shingal town, Kurdistan, Iraq (Photo: Flickr/Seth Franzman)
21 September 2016 by Janet H. Anderson

Just days ago Yazidi Nadia Murad who survived an attack by the so-called Islamic State (IS also known as ISIS) on the Yazidi community of northern Iraq and Amal Clooney, her lawyer, spoke to the UN about the need for justice for the Yazidis, forced out of their ancient homelands around Mount Sinjar.

Murad – who has just been appointed the UN’s goodwill ambassador on human trafficking – described how her family were killed in massacres conducted by ISIS during 2014, how she and other Yazidi women suffered when captured and held by ISIS fighters and how more than 2,000 Yazidi women are still being held captive. Clooney called on the UN to support calls for a genocide prosecution against the perpetrators at the International Criminal Court. Evidence – mainly refugee statements – has been sent to The Hague by Murad’s own organization Yazda, supported by former ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo. These efforts are part of the “It's On U” campaign using interlocking strategies aimed at an ICC prosecution of ISIS for genocide.

Janet Anderson spoke to Joanna Frivet, British-based barrister, who has travelled to the region and refugee camps where Yazidis are now living, to gather evidence for a potential prosecution. 

Nadia Murad Basee Taha, a Yazidi woman who escaped sexual enslavement by Islamic State, bows her head after telling her story during a UN Security Council meeting (Photo: Flickr/UN Photo/Amanda Voisard)
21 July 2016 by Stephanie van den Berg, The Hague (The Netherlands)

After a United Nations Inquiry commission found last month that the crimes of Islamic State (IS also known as ISIS) against the Yazidi minority in northern Iraq amounted to genocide the call for accountability and prosecution of the perpetrators increased. What are the options to see anyone in the dock for not only genocide but also the underlying war crimes and crimes against humanity the commission said have occurred? International Justice Tribune spoke to former US ambassador for war crimes Stephen Rapp [IJT-186] who plays a central role in advising all stakeholders inside and outside on how to move forward and find justice for crimes against the Yazidi.



At a shelter for Yazidis refugees who fled IS attacks in Iraq, Mahoubet says the jihadist movement killed her husband and kidnapped her sister and daughter (Photo: Flickr/Caroline Gluck/EU/ECHO)
23 March 2015 by Karina Hof

The Islamic State (IS) is perpetuating heinous human rights violations in Iraq and members of the jihadist movement may be guilty of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity, says a UN report released last week. Its author, the High Commissioner for Human Rights, recommends Iraq join the International Criminal Court and accept its jurisdiction “over the current situation”.

13 April 2010 by -

"Nations that supply terrorists with nuclear secrets or material should be prosecuted by a special tribunal," says outgoing Dutch Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende. And he believes the ideal location for such an international nuclear court would be The Hague. But, isn't there already an international court in The Hague with the power to try international lawbreakers?

By Thijs Bouwknegt

19 July 2004 by -

Read here the International Justice Tribune, No. 9

Table of content:

  • France;Widow calls France to account 
  • Memories of Iraq; in Kuwait and Iran
  • Rwanda; Kibuye, a “successful” legal saga

Click here to download the IJT, No. 9

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23 December 2009 by -

The 96th edition of the International Justice Tribune is now available. You can read it here.


Download the print version of the International Justice Tribune 96 (PDF file)

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03 May 2004 by -

Their names are kept secret, but the seven judges and five prosecutors charged with trying the leaders of the former Iraqi regime, including Saddam Hussein, have been appointed. The only name to be made public in the 20 April announcement was that of the director general of the court, Salem Chalabi. The latter is the nephew of the president of the Iraqi National Congress, a party allied to the Americans. The court budget for the first year is estimated to be 75 million dollars.

05 July 2004 by -

In two weeks, the legal fate of ex-president Saddam Hussein and leaders of his toppled Iraqi regime has progressed remarkably thanks to the official end of the US occupation of Iraq. On 30 June, the \« Saddam file\ » became the chief symbol of the political hand-over from the occupying power to the national authorities. Admittedly, the prison in which the detainees are being kept is still guarded by the Americans, as are the courtrooms where the hearings will take place. However, the upcoming trial of members of the former regime looks to be much more of a national affair.

20 September 2004 by -

Two parallel events hit the Iraqi headlines on 8 August: the government restored the death penalty and arrest warrants were issued against Salem Chalabi, head of the Iraqi special court, and his uncle Ahmed, the leader of the Iraqi National Congress party. The latter, a one-time Pentagon protégé who fell into disgrace after being suspected of colluding with Iran and who was accused of money laundering, had his warrant lifted on 1 September after a confrontation with his accuser, Judge Zuhair Al-Maliky.

29 March 2005 by -

Justice has so far been relatively powerless to prosecute those who make money out of conflicts that result in the deaths of millions of civilians. Recently, the Netherlands has taken the initiative to tackle the problem. On 18 March, Gus van Kouwenhoven, a 62-year-old Dutchman, was arrested and accused of war crimes for breaking the embargo on selling arms to Liberia. In the mid-1990s, Dutch courts investigated the role of «Mr Gus» in trafficking drugs through Liberia. In 2001, the UN identified him as a key player in the violence in Liberia and Sierra Leone.