Ending impunity : establishing the legitimacy of the International Criminal Court


In 1998, the Rome Statute established the International Criminal Court (ICC) to end impunity for violators of international human rights law. As the ICC is opening criminal investigations for the first time in its existence, it is important to determine the legitimacy of the young institution in order to understand its importance in international politics and international legal precedence. These first cases can be used to illustrate that while some fears might be misplaced, others are sadly realized. Especially through the criminal investigation processes in Darfur, the ICC has acted responsibly and has not violated its founding principles or Sudan's sovereignty. Conversely, ICC intervention in Uganda has created a political situation that pits the prospect of peace against the pursuit of justice. If the ICC is able to prove that it is responsible in its judicial processes, it will likely become a legitimized institution. An increased role by the international community in ICC affairs would also bring a level of comfort and transparency that has not yet been realized. Furthermore, as individual states begin to use diplomatic means to enforce the norms of international human rights, the court might be used infrequently, and only when it is critical in the pursuit of justice. Despite the difficulties. faced by the ICC, it has the potential to gain legitimacy and become a recognizable player on the international political scene.


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Thesis Completion





Sadri, Houman A.


Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)


College of Sciences

Degree Program

Political Science


Dissertations, Academic -- Sciences;Sciences -- Dissertations, Academic; Darfur; Human rights; International courts; International criminal court; Uganda; War crimes







Access Status

Open Access

Length of Campus-only Access


Document Type

Honors in the Major Thesis

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