Definitions of Crimes Against Humanity

The 1945 London Charter of the International Military Tribunal (Nuremberg Charter), Article 6(c):
“murder, extermination, enslavement, deportation, and other inhumane acts committed against civilian populations, before or during the war; or persecutions on political, racial or religious grounds in execution of or in connection with any crime within the jurisdiction of the Tribunal, whether or not in violation of the domestic law of the country where perpetrated.” [This definition was also used in the Charter of the International Military Tribunal for the Far East.]

The Rome Statute, Article 7(1):
“…any of the following acts when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population, with knowledge of the attack:

(a) Murder;
(b) Extermination;
(c) Enslavement;
(d) Deportation or forcible transfer of population;
(e) Imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty in violation of fundamental rules of international law;
(f) Torture;
(g) Rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy, enforced sterilization, or any other form of sexual violence of comparable gravity;
(h) Persecution against any identifiable group or collectivity on political, racial, national, ethnic, cultural, religious, gender as defined in paragraph 3, or other grounds that are universally recognized as impermissible under international law, in connection with any act referred to in this paragraph or any crime within the jurisdiction of the Court;
(i) Enforced disappearance of persons;
(j) The crime of apartheid;
(k) Other inhumane acts of a similar character intentionally causing great suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health.”

The Statute of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY), Article 5:
“…the following crimes when committed in armed conflict, whether international or internal in character, and directed against any civilian population:

(a) murder;
(b) extermination;
(c) enslavement;
(d) deportation;
(e) imprisonment;
(f) torture;
(g) rape;
(h) persecutions on political, racial and religious grounds;
(i) other inhumane acts.”

The Statute of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda (ICTR), Article 3:
“…the following crimes when committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack against any civilian population on national, political, ethnic, racial or religious grounds:

(a) Murder;
(b) Extermination;
(c) Enslavement;
(d) Deportation;
(e) Imprisonment;
(f) Torture;
(g) Rape;
(h) Persecutions on political, racial and religious grounds;
(i) Other inhumane acts.”

The Statute of the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL), Article 2:
“…the following crimes as part of a widespread or systematic attack against any civilian population:

a. Murder;
b. Extermination;
c. Enslavement;
d. Deportation;
e. Imprisonment;
f. Torture;
g. Rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy and any other form of sexual violence;
h. Persecution on political, racial, ethnic or religious grounds;
i. Other inhumane acts.”

The Law on the Establishment of the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC), Article 5:
“…any acts committed as part of a widespread or systematic attack directed against any civilian population, on national, political, ethnical, racial or religious grounds, such as:

• murder;
• extermination;
• enslavement;
• deportation;
• imprisonment;
• torture;
• rape;
• persecutions on political, racial, and religious grounds;
• other inhumane acts.”

The International Law Commission’s Draft Code of Crimes against the Peace and Security of Mankind (1996), Article 18:
“…any of the following acts, when committed in a systematic manner or on a large scale and instigated or directed by a Government or by any organization or group:

(a) Murder;
(b) Extermination;
(c) Torture;
(d) Enslavement;
(e) Persecution on political, racial, religious or ethnic grounds;
(f) Institutionalized discrimination on racial, ethnic or religious grounds involving the violation of fundamental human rights and freedoms and resulting in seriously disadvantaging a part of the population;
(g) Arbitrary deportation or forcible transfer of population;
(h) Arbitrary imprisonment;
(i) Forced disappearance of persons;
(j) Rape, enforced prostitution and other forms of sexual abuse;
(k) Other inhumane acts which severely damage physical or mental integrity, health or human dignity, such as mutilation and severe bodily harm.”