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After the ICC Office of the Prosecutor’s 2016 policy paper on case selection and prioritisation - towards an international crime of ‘ecocide’?

Pereira, Ricardo 2020. After the ICC Office of the Prosecutor’s 2016 policy paper on case selection and prioritisation - towards an international crime of ‘ecocide’? Criminal Law Forum 31 (2) 10.1007/s10609-020-09393-y

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Abstract

The 2016 Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) policy paper on case selection and prioritization is a significant development in that it highlights the possible role of the ICC in prosecuting environmental damage, illegal natural resource exploitation and land grabbing. For obvious reasons, however, the ICC Office of the Prosecutor policy paper could not expand the court’s current jurisdiction over ecocide which is dependent on a formal amendment to the ICC Statute and the policy paper is only an internal policy document. But more fundamentally it has been predicted that the 2016 ICC Office of the Prosecutor may signify the revitalization of the debate on how an international crime of ecocide could be conceptualised under international law and ultimately whether the ICC should have a broader jurisdiction over ecocide. This article aims to critically evaluate how a crime of ecocide could be conceptualised under international law, as well as to assess the limitations of conceptualising ecocide based on the narrow definition of the existing crimes under the ICC Statute. Moreover, this article aims to critically evaluate developments in past three and half years following the adoption 2016 OTP Policy Paper, and notes that the practice of the OTP in dealing with recent national communications and the ICC case law itself to date have not signified a considerable shift in interpreting the law in cases involving environmental damage, illegal natural resources exploitation and land grabbing. Therefore, they have done little so far to clarify the scope of the court’s existing jurisdiction over “ecocide”.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: Published
Schools: Law
Subjects: K Law > K Law (General)
K Law > KZ Law of Nations
Publisher: Springer Verlag (Germany)
ISSN: 1046-8374
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 20 April 2020
Date of Acceptance: 19 March 2020
Last Modified: 20 Apr 2020 11:00
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/131093

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