Chapter 11 Beyond the State: Individual Civil Responsibility for Violations of International Law

In: Changing Actors in International Law
Author: Miriam Cohen

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Abstract

In recent times, international law has been marked by the emergence of individuals as actors beyond the traditional ideologies that primarily recognized states. Historically, the duty to provide reparation for internationally wrongful conduct has existed in customary international law. Some inter-state agreements and, more recently, human rights mechanisms dealing with human rights violations also establish such duty of reparation. The goal of this Chapter is to examine the duty to repair injuries when individuals commit international crimes. As such, it discusses the domestic civil responsibility of individuals who have committed or participated in the commission of wrongful conduct which amounts to crimes under international law. The Chapter ultimately claims that international law is evolving towards a broader recognition of individual responsibility in relation to international crimes, one that is expanding beyond criminal accountability.

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