‘Investigating and Prosecuting International Crimes’ is the second course in Leiden University’s new series on International Law in Action. The first course covered international courts and tribunals in The Hague in general. This second course provides an insider perspective into the work of international criminal courts and tribunals. You will learn about the investigation and prosecution of international crimes in The Hague.
Atrocities produce unspeakable forms of violence. We will explore whether and how international criminal justice contribute to what UN Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon called the ‘age of accountability’. The theory is, those who commit the worst of human crimes, are held accountable, whether they are rank-and-file foot soldiers or military commanders, whether they are lowly civil servants following orders or top political leaders. We will test how this can be done and if this is realistic.
During this course, you will be offered a look into the ‘kitchen’ of the Hague international criminal courts and tribunals. You will learn how international criminal justice functions, who the actors are, what outcomes it produces, and how it can be improved.
If you want to gain a better understanding of international criminal cases, like the Lubanga case, the ICC’s first ever trial, and the legal legacy of UN international criminal tribunals, then this course is definitely for you!
This course is free to join and to participate in. There is the possibility to get a verified certificate for the course, which is a paid option. If you want a certificate, but are unable to pay for it, you can request financial aid via Coursera.
Welcome to this course
-Great that you are joining us! In this course you will learn about international criminal justice. The course starts with a short introduction module. To give you a better understanding what this course is about and help you study succesfully in an online course. If you encounter any difficulties while studying, please let us know in the forum. For technical difficulties or questions regarding the course certificate, you can always contact the Coursera Learner Helpdesk. Good luck & we hope you will enjoy this course!
The International Criminal Justice System: Core Concepts and Foundations
-Welcome to the first module of this Course! This week, we will introduce you to some of the foundations and core concepts of the international criminal justice system. We will discuss international crimes (genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes) and foundations of liability. We will relate the discussion to some of the challenges of the Lubanga case, the International Criminal Court's first ever trial.
The International Criminal Justice System: Justice Institutions and Procedures
-In this second week we will examine justice institutions and the different stages of the justice process. We will study how major international criminal cases emerge. We will cover the role of different actors in the process, including prosecutorial strategies and legal and political challenges.
-In this third week, we will focus on the criminal process, including the challenges faced by different actors. We will study how a trial unfolds. We will explore the role and perspective of the Defence and victims. We will then examine the role of the judge in international criminal proceedings. We will finally discuss the role of child soldiers as victims and perpetrators, including the experiences of the ICC in its first cases (Lubanga,Ongwen).
Remedying Wrong and Look to the Future
-In this final week, we will explore how wrong can be remedied through trials, and how international criminal justice can be improved. After this week, you should be able to formulate a proposal on how international criminal justice can be enhanced.