Congratulations to Wisconsin Law Professor Alexandra Huneeus, whose paper entitled “International Criminal Law by Other Means: The Quasi-Criminal Jurisdiction of the Human Rights Courts” has been selected the 2013 winner of the scholarly paper competition sponsored by the Association of American Law Schools!
Here’s the abstract of her paper:
‘Scholarship on the international prosecution of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity has typically focused on two types of international courts, the criminal tribunals and the hybrid tribunals. This article proposes that there is an alternative international mechanism of accountability that has been overlooked: the jurisdiction exercised by international human rights bodies of ordering and supervising national prosecutions. Original empirical research reveals that the regional rights bodies have forged a quasi-criminal practice that strives towards the very same outcomes as the international and hybrid criminal tribunals: punishment and deterrence, restorative justice, processes of societal reconciliation, and justice system reform. Further, this form of jurisdiction has unique attributes: it promotes prosecutions that are local and paid for by the state (rather than the international community), even as its process is responsive to victims’ needs. The Inter-American Court of Human Rights in particular has made national prosecution of gross state-sponsored crimes a center-piece of its regional agenda. And, like the international and hybrid tribunals, it has achieved some success. The article concludes that the quasi-criminal jurisdiction of the human rights courts should be considered as a complement and, in certain situations, an alternative to the work of the current international and hybrid criminal tribunals.’
Alex, whose contributions to IntLawGrrls blog may be found here, will present her paper during the upcoming AALS Annual Meeting, at 2 p.m. Sunday, January 6, 2013, in the Cambridge Room, 2d floor, Hilton New Orleans Riverside. (Yours truly will serve as a commentator at a “New Voices in Human Rights” panel that same day – 8:30 January 6 in the Hilton’s Jasperwood Room; hope to see you there.)
Over the years I’ve had the pleasure of reading Alex’ manuscripts, and am delighted to see this worthy recognition of this work.