Twentieth Anniversary Summer Session of SLS

Sunday 5 to Wednesday 15 August 2018

Preliminary Draft Academic Programme

Draft title: ‘Towards an Effective International Criminal Justice System in the Era of The Permanent International Criminal Court – Coordinating and Strengthening Enforcement on National, Regional, and International Levels’

2018 is a year of plenty notable international (criminal) law events to commemorate. 400 years ago, the defenestration of Prague provoked the Bohemian revolt and the outbreak of the Thirty Years’ War; 100 years ago, the treaty of Brest-Litovsk concluded Russia’s participation in World War I and the Armistice of Compiègne ended fighting on the Western Front; 75 years ago, the Warsaw Ghetto uprising marks the largest and symbolically most important Jewish uprising in German-occupied Europe; 70 years ago, the International Military Tribunal for the Far East delivered its judgment against major war criminals and the General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; 25 years ago, United Nations Security Council Resolution 827 established the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia; and 20 years ago, the United Nations Diplomatic Conference of Plenipotentiaries on the Establishment of an International Criminal Court adopted the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court. One year later, the Salzburg Law School on International Criminal Law, Humanitarian Law and Human Rights Law (SLS) held its inaugural summer session.

For 2018, SLS proudly announces its Twentieth Anniversary Summer Session, Sunday 5 to Wednesday 15 August 2018, which will focus on international criminal law enforcement.

Gilbert Bitti and Eleni Chaitidou at SLS 2014
Gilbert Bitti and Eleni Chaitidou at SLS 2014

SLS 2018 will have a look at the enforcement of international criminal law by various judicial and quasi-judicial mechanisms. When the Statute of the International Criminal Court was adopted in Rome in 1998, hopes were high that the complementarity regime with the ICC at its center would be the adequate tool to close the impunity gap. 15 years later, despite progress in many regards, states have still not lived up to their primary duty to exercise their criminal jurisdiction over those responsible for international crimes. On international level, the ICC continues to face limitations e.g. in terms of jurisdiction and resources. SLS 2018 will closer examine current efforts to strengthen the international criminal justice system within existing and through new institutions on international, regional and national level.

At its Twentieth Anniversary Summer Session, SLS will discuss the different generations of international courts and tribunals: From the post World War II military tribunals to the ad hoc and hybrid tribunals of the 1990s and the ICC. In addition, we will cover latest developments such as the regional criminal chambers at the African Court of Justice and Human Rights, the Kosovo Specialist Chambers, and the International, Impartial and Independent Mechanism on international crimes committed in the Syrian Arab Republic.

We plan to analyse efforts to enhance effectiveness by various actors. These are, on national level, the implementation of crimes under international law in domestic criminal codes as well as the strengthening of international cooperation for these crimes, by means such as the draft Convention on Crimes Against Humanity and the initiative for a Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty for Core Crimes. On international level, e.g. performance indicators and the institutional reform at the ICC as well as campaigns for self-restraint of the Security Council's veto powers in face of mass atrocities can be named.

Luis Moreno Ocampo, David Donat Cattin, Otto Triffterer, and Chris Hall at SLS 2008
Luis Moreno Ocampo, Chris Hall, David Donat Cattin, and Otto Triffterer at SLS 2008

With multiple actors within a global system of international criminal justice, coordination becomes paramount. SLS 2018 will analyse concepts such as complementarity and cooperation and assess their value as structuring elements but also gauge their strength in delivering international criminal justice.

SLS 2018 will offer ample opportunity to debate current developments in the field of international criminal law, e.g. the activation of the crime of aggression, the situation in Burundi after Burindi's withdrawal from the Rome Statute, the situation in Afghanistan, as well as the opening of preliminary examinations into the situations in the Philippines and in Venezuela. Court officials will give an update on the latest jurisprudence of the ICC and we will continue our project on international criminal law in cinema.

Among others, the SLS 2018 faculty will include HE Ms. Kimberly Prost, Judge (elect) at the International Criminal Court (key-note speaker); Dr. Philipp Ambach, Chief of the Victims Participation and Reparations Section, Registry, ICC; Mr. Gilbert Bitti, Senior Legal Advisor to the Pre-Trial Division, ICC; Ms. Eleni Chaitidou, Legal Officer at the Pre-Trial and Trial Divisions, ICC; Dr. David Donat Cattin, Secretary-General, Parliamentarians for Global Action; Adjunct Assistant Professor of International Law, Center for Global Affairs, New York University; Prof. Benjamin Ferencz, A leading Nuremberg Prosecutor with continuous efforts to enhance international criminal law and its enforcement (via video message; to be confirmed); Prof. Gerhard Hafner, Emeritus Professor of International Law, University of Vienna; Prof. Claus Kress, Professor of Criminal Law and International Law, Chair for German and International Criminal Law, Director of the Institute of International Peace and Security Law, University of Cologne, Germany; Prof. Suzannah Linton, Distinguished Professor, International Law Department, Law School, Zhejiang Gongshang University, Hangzhou, China; Ms. Angela Mudukuti, International Criminal Justice Lawyer, Wayamo Foundation; Prof. William A. Schabas, OC MRIA, Professor of International Law, School of Law, Middlesex University, Professor of International Criminal Law and Human Rights, Leiden University (to be confirmed); Dr. Astrid Reisinger Coracini, Director of the Salzburg Law School on International Criminal Law, Humanitarian Law and Human Rights Law.

Applications are welcome at any time, latest until 22 April 2018.

The academic programme will last from Monday 6 August through Tuesday 14 August, daily from 9.30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 2.15 p.m. to 5.45 p.m. with a free Saturday afternoon and Sunday. Sunday 5 August and Wednesday 15 August will be our days of arrival and departure respectively. During these eight working days, 26 academic sessions of 1,5 hrs are offered (equalling 52 academic contact hours in total). The course consists of lectures, discussions, workshops and case studies, allowing for discussion and interaction among lecturers and participants. It will be held at the Faculty of Law of the University of Salzburg, located at a 16th century residence in the centre of the old town.

Participants will obtain a certificate of attendance, but may also take an exam, for which the University of Salzburg allocates 4 credits according to the European Credit Transfer System.

View Past SLS Programmes