Senator Durbin’s Speech Highlights ABA Working Group on Crimes Against Humanity

U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-Illinois) will reintroduce Crimes Against Humanity (CAH) legislation in Congress. Referring to the lack of such legislation as a “legal loophole,” he explained that “[d]espite longstanding U.S. support for the prosecution of crimes against humanity committed in World War II … in Pol Pot’s Cambodia, Rwanda, the former Yugoslavia, Sierra Leone and elsewhere … there is no U.S. law prohibiting crimes against humanity.” Senator Durbin’s initiative to reintroduce CAH legislation coincides with the recently formed ABA Working Group on CAH, of which Professor Leila Sadat, Director of the Harris Institute, is an inaugural member.

To read more and to watch Senator Durban’s speech, visit: http://bit.ly/1Hc0nxb

Recent articles in the Economist and The Hill highlights the gap in U.S. and international law as it relates to crimes against humanity

“Seventy years after the liberation of the Nazi concentration camps, many countries lack the legal authority to prosecute war criminals and perpetrators of atrocities and give redress to victims.” Genocide, and a number of war crimes, including torture and enforced disappearance, have dedicated UN treaties, but there is still none which covers crimes against humanity. Moreover, there is a gap in U.S. legislation that limits the country’s ability to bring perpetrators who are in its custody to justice.

Read more at:
The Economist: http://econ.st/1zl77lY
The Hill: http://bit.ly/1Hc0bhx

UN International Law Commission adds the topic of “crimes against humanity” onto its active agenda.

This important development follows the Experts’ Meeting entitled “Fulfilling the Dictates of Public Conscience: Moving Forward with a Convention on Crimes Against Humanity” and the subsequent conference Report published on July 17, 2014. Convened by the Crimes Against Humanity Initiative, the meeting in Geneva brought together leading experts in international criminal law, including members of the International Law Commission, to discuss the complex issues the ILC will face as it begins the study and drafting process of a global convention on crimes against humanity.  More

Propuesta de Convención Internacional para la Prevención y la Sanción de los Crímenes de Lesa Humanidad

Preámbulo

Los Estados Partes en la presente Convención,

Conscientes de que todos los pueblos están unidos por estrechos lazos y comparten ciertos valores comunes,

Afirmando su creencia en la necesidad de proteger de forma efectiva la vida y la dignidad humana,

Reafirmando su compromiso con los propósitos y principios de las Naciones Unidas, enunciados en su Carta, y con las normas universales de derechos humanos reflejadas en la Declaración Universal de los Derechos Humanos y otros instrumentos internacionales pertinentes, …continue reading

Proposed International Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Crimes Against Humanity

Preamble

The States Parties to the present Convention,

Conscious that all people are united by common bonds and share certain common values,

Affirming their belief in the need to effectively protect human life and human dignity,

Reaffirming their commitment to the purposes and principles of the United Nations, outlined in its Charter, and to the universal human rights norms reflected in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other relevant international instruments,    continue reading

Proposition de Convention internationale sur la prévention et la répression des crimes contre l’humanité

Préambule

Les États Parties à la présente Convention,

Conscients que tous les peuples sont unis par des liens étroits et qu’ils
partagent certaines valeurs communes,

Affirmant leur conviction selon laquelle la vie humaine et la dignité humaine doivent être effectivement protégées,

Réaffirmant leur attachement aux buts et principes des Nations Unies, énoncés dans la Charte, et aux normes universelles des droits de l’homme reflétées dans la Déclaration universelle des droits de l’homme et les autres instruments internationaux pertinents,

Ayant à l’esprit les millions de personnes, en particulier des femmes et des enfants, qui, au cours de l’histoire de l’humanité, ont été soumis à l’extermination, à la persécution, à des violences sexuelles et à d’autres atrocités qui ont heurté profondément la conscience de l’humanité, Soulignant leur engagement à épargner à la communauté internationale et à leurs peuples la répétition d’atrocités, en prévenant la commission de crimes contre l’humanité et en poursuivant et punissant les auteurs de tels crimes, … continue reading