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July 01, 2016

Ethics Enforcement in the International Criminal Law Community

By Colonel Linda Strite Murnane

Imagine a world in which there is no central authority empowered to review and call to account a judge or person appearing in court for failing to abide by the ethical obligations of judges and lawyers. This article will address the various tools in place to deal with ethics and professionalism in the international criminal law community, and particularly in the international criminal courts.

Different Enabling Mechanisms for Different International Courts

Each of the international criminal courts, as well as international tribunals and international courts handling arbitration, is established through a different mechanism. For example, the International Court of Justice is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations. It is not a criminal court. It was established in June 1945 by the Charter of the United Nations. Its purpose is to settle disputes presented to it by nations in accordance with international law.1

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