Out of the Shadows: A Comparative Assessment of the Role of Victims at the International Criminal Court and in Canada
Keywords: Criminal Law, Victims, International Criminal Court, Victim participation
AbstractThe International Criminal Court (ICC) has emerged as a unique institution for infusing victims in all phases of its proceedings. However, it has faced challenges in doing so and is still grappling with how to achieve meaningful participation and reparations for victims in a sustainable way. Comparative analysis can be valuable in addressing shared concerns, including the role of victims in criminal proceedings. This article provides the first comparative legal analysis of an adversarial common law jurisdiction (Canada) and the ICC with respect to the role of victims. It concludes that the ICC could enhance victim reparations by considering domestic models that provide victims with compensation much earlier in the process and re-focus victim participation in areas that do not overlap with the role of the prosecutor. Countries like Canada, which have been reticent to enhance victim participation, could consider some of the measures adopted for victims at the ICC.
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