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August 2017
Chautauqua Institution
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CWRU Law School
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February 2018
CWRU Law School
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CWRU Law School
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Wading in Troubled Waters: Supporting the Work of International
Criminal Court (ICC) Through Domestic Legal Institutions in Africa
The Frederick K. Cox International Law Center
SEP 2, 2015
4:30 PM - 5:30 PM
Moot Courtroom (A59)
CLE Credit
Approved for 1 hour of in-person CLE credit

This lecture explores an interesting phenomenon in Africa’s relationship with the International Criminal Court (ICC), which is the apparent discord between the external policy agenda espoused by political leaders, and the seemingly grounded support for the ICC and the international criminal processes by internal legal institutions in most African states. It argues that whereas in their collective African leaders have condemned the ICC and are actively seeking ways of curtailing its authority to deal with powerful political figures across the continent, their desire to disengage completely from the ICC will probably be difficult to attain. The paper suggests that making assumptions about Africa’s relationship with the ICC based solely on the rhetoric of political leaders and the tantrums of the African Union (AU) may be less useful than eliciting insights on how modern domestic legal institutions that have aligned themselves with principles of international criminal justice but function within the constraints of political power may become key to ending impunity in the continent. Based on Kenya’s recent experiences with the ICC, the paper analyses the role and influence of domestic legal structures in this regard. It does so by, evaluating the success or otherwise of the political and legal efforts to disengage from ICC and withdraw from the Rome Statute, highlighting the point of convergence of ideas/roles of domestic legal institutions and the ICC evident in recently enacted laws/treaties as well as jurisprudence, and interrogating the responsibility African states as members of the international community and forecasting some of the possibilities that exist for strengthening their participation in the international system and bolstering the fight against impunity.
Speaker Information
William H. Pryor Jr

Laurence Juma
Professor & Deputy Dean Faculty of Law
Rhodes University
South Africa

Laurence Juma is a Professor of International Law and Deputy Dean, Faculty of Law, Rhodes University, South Africa, and a Professorial Fellow, Centre for Jurisprudence and Constitutional Studies, Kabarak University, Kenya. Prior to his current posts, he has been an academic member of the Faculties of Law of Nairobi University, National University of Lesotho, and Fort Hare University. He has also held visiting positions in Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic and the Danish Centre for Human Rights, in Copenhagen, Denmark. He holds degrees of Bachelor of Laws (LLB) from Nairobi University, Master of Laws (LLM) from University of Pennsylvania, USA, Master of Arts (MA) in Conflict Studies from Notre Dame University, USA and Doctor of Laws (LLD) from Fort Hare University, Republic of South Africa.

Professor Juma has taught a variety of undergraduate and post graduate law courses in his career. These include customary law, property law, international human rights law, constitutional law, public international law and international humanitarian law. He has also supervised Masters and doctoral thesis on topics related to international law, international humanitarian law, human rights and customary law. His current research interests are in the area of human rights, conflict studies, humanitarian law and international law. He has published 47 journal articles and book chapters, and 2 books.

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