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75th Anniversary of the Verdict of the International Military Tribunal

From Consensus in Nuremberg to Disagreement in Rome - The Prosecution of Core International Crimes Today: On 30 September and 1 October 1946, the International Military Tribunal (IMT) delivered its Judgement in the trial against the most high-ranking political and military leaders of the German Nazi regime, the Third Reich.

The International Nuremberg Principles Academy and the Robert H. Jackson Center commemorated the issuance of the Judgement of the IMT with a special event: Two virtually held roundtable discussions with high-profile participants, dedicated to dissecting the historical and legal implications of the Nuremberg Trial Judgement and the link to contemporary prosecutions of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide.

First panel: The judgement as a precedent for the evolution of international criminal law

The two roundtables covered the implications of the Judgement for the system of international criminal law. The first panel, on 30 September 2021 from 14:00 to 16:00 (CEST) analysed the legal aspects of the Judgement as a precedent for the evolution of the field of international criminal law. The speakers comprised of Chief Prosecutors who worked for the Nuremberg Trials successors in international courts and tribunals established after 1990 by the United Nations and the international community.

Chair:

Stephen Rapp, Senior Visiting Fellow of Practice, Blavatnik School of Government, University of Oxford, former Prosecutor of the Special Court for Sierra Leone and Director of Prosecutions of the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, former United States Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes Issues.

Panellists:

  • Richard J. Goldstone, retired Justice of the Constitutional Court of South Africa and first Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Tribunals for the Former Yugoslavia and Rwanda
  • David Crane, former Prosecutor, Special Court of Sierra Leone
  • Fatou Bensouda, former Prosecutor, International Criminal Court.


Second panel: Legal implications of the judgement for prosecutors today

The second panel on 1 October 2021 from 15:00 to 17:00 (CEST) has discussed the challenges for the prosecution of international crimes today and reflected on the legal implications of the judgement of the International Military Tribunal of Nuremberg for prosecutors today.

The second roundtable comprised Prosecutors currently serving at the ICC and other international courts and tribunals whose mandate is the prosecution of core international crimes and the Federal Chief Prosecutor of Germany who is responsible for prosecutions in German courts under the principle of universal jurisdiction.

Chair:

Janet H. Anderson, international Journalist and Independent Consultant, The Hague

Panellists:

  • Dr. Serge Brammertz, Prosecutor, United Nations International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals
  • Norman Farrell, Prosecutor, Special Tribunal for Lebanon
  • Dr. Peter Frank, Generalbundesanwalt, Bundesgerichtshof (Federal Prosecutor General, Federal Court of Justice)
  • James Johnson, Prosecutor, Residual Special Court for Sierra Leone
  • Dr. Karim A. A. Khan QC, Prosecutor, International Criminal Court
  • Professor Alex Whiting, Deputy Prosecutor, Kosovo Specialist Chambers and Specialist Prosecutor’s Office


The discussion on both days was held in English and virtually via Zoom. The report of the event is now available for download.

Photo Credit: National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, MD; Photo U.S. Army Signal Corps

Videos of the Conference - Copyright: International Nuremberg Principles Academy

Panel I with Stephan Rapp (Chair), Richard J. Goldstone, David Crane and Fatou Bensouda.

Panel II with Janet H. Anderson (Chair), Dr. Serge Brammertz, Norman Farrell, Dr Peter Frank, James Johnson, Dr Karim A. A. Khan QC, and Professor Alex Whiting.