Complicity in Genocide and the Duality of Responsibility

Nina HB Jørgensen

in The Legacy of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780199573417
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191728822 | DOI:
Complicity in Genocide and the Duality of Responsibility

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In 2007, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) upheld the notion that the Genocide Convention provides for state as well as individual responsibility for genocide, referring to the ‘duality of responsibility’ under international law. According to the ICJ, the obligation on states extends to complicity in genocide. In the meantime, the ICTY considered the relationship between ‘complicity in genocide’ and ‘aiding and abetting genocide’ within the terms of its Statute, and essentially settled the law on aiding and abetting genocide. The analysis of both the ICJ and the ICTY illustrates how problematic the legal definition of complicity in genocide has proved to be both for individual and state responsibility. This chapter examines the ‘duality of responsibility’ with specific reference to complicity in genocide, exploring the extent to which the issues faced by the ICJ are analogues of issues the ICTY and the ICTR grappled with but left partially unresolved.

Keywords: genocide; complicity; aiding and abetting; International Court of Justice; responsibility; joint criminal enterprise; perpetrator; accomplice; omission

Chapter.  16335 words. 

Subjects: Public International Law

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