International Criminal Law

2 credits / 6 weeks weeks
16 Jan 2023 - 24 Feb 2023

Professor Nobuo Hayashi

Gross violations of human rights, including war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide have characterized several contemporary conflicts and authoritarian regimes. In such contexts, questions of impunity and accountability become central to peacebuilding and reconstruction of post-conflict societies. Yet, criminal prosecution of persecutors poses challenges for post-conflict reconciliation, particularly when such reconciliation is contingent upon demands for amnesty. This course takes a holistic view on the debates surrounding linkages between serious crimes and justice. It provides a general introduction to the field of international criminal law. It focuses on the evolution of international crimes under international law and the role of international criminal courts in the prosecution of international crimes. Students will analyze the jurisdictional reach of international criminal courts, their relationship with national jurisdictions (primacy v. complementarity) and the impact of the interests of justice and peace in the exercise of their jurisdiction. Students will also explore the objective and subjective elements of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. Particular attention will be placed on those elements of international crimes that make them distinguishable from ordinary crimes, and on the manner in which criminal responsibility is determined by international criminal courts.

Nobuo Hayashi


Nobuo Hayashi specialises in in international humanitarian law, international criminal law, and public international law. He has over 18 years of experience performing advanced research, publishing and editing scholarly works, authoring court submissions, advising international prosecutors, and speaking at academic and diplomatic conferences. He regularly teaches at defence academies, Red Cross symposia and professional workshops, as well as university faculties of law, political science, and peace and security studies. He also trains commissioned officers, military lawyers, judges, prosecutors, defence counsel, diplomats and other government officials, humanitarian relief specialists, and NGO representatives from all over the world. Major positions held: Visiting Lecturer, United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute; Senior Legal Advisor, International Law and Policy Institute; Visiting Professor, International University of Japan; Researcher, Peace Research Institute Oslo; Legal Advisor, Norwegian Centre for Human Rights; Legal Officer, Office of the Prosecutor, International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia. Degrees earned: Ph.D. in international law (Leiden), LL.M. in international law (Cambridge), Diplôme d’études supérieures in international law (HEI/Geneva), B.S. in Foreign Service (Georgetown University).


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