The Complexities of the Gravity Threshold in the International Criminal Court: A Practical Necessity or an Insidious Pitfall?

In: Max Planck Yearbook of United Nations Law Online
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The issue addressed in this article is whether and to what extent the gravity thres-hold in the Rome Statute serves its purpose in determining case admissibility to the ICC. To answer this question, the article analyses the problems and pitfalls inherent in the concept and drafting of the threshold. These problems include, (1) the lack of a definition for the term ‘gravity’ and the difficulty of drafting a definition, (2) the problems associated with using the threshold as a justification for choosing some cases over others, (3) the overlap with the ICC’S subject matter jurisdiction and (4) the loose justiciability of the Prosecutor’s discretion in case selection.

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