In today’s world, there is an increasing need for specialised staff that can handle the challenges of investigating, prosecuting and successfully bringing cases to trial to secure convictions for so-called ‘core international crimes’. Since 2016, investigations and prosecutions of the crime of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes have risen with a staggering 44 % within the European Union (EU), according to Eurojust.
Are you interested in international criminal law and the legal aspects of counter-terrorism? Then register now for the 17th Annual Summer Law Programme on International Criminal Law and International Legal & Comparative Approaches to Counter-Terrorism, co-organised with the War Crimes Research Office of American University’s Washington College of Law.
In this unique training programme, selected students from top US law colleges and universities will learn from internationally renowned legal practitioners and scholars. Additional places are available to other interested law students and professionals who wish to learn more about international criminal law and legal aspects of counter-terrorism.
Registration is not possible for this programme at the moment as we are at full capacity. Should more places become available, we will update the page.
What will you gain?
Students and early-career professionals who are interested in studying international criminal law and/or the legal aspects of counter-terrorism.
This course brings together high-profile experts from international organisations and tribunals, as well as from leading law faculties and other organisations. Have a look at last year’s programme to find out about our speakers in 2022.
About the programme:
Part one: International Criminal Law (30 May - 9 June)
“We must recognise that peace in Europe cannot be taken for granted. With ‘war’, often come ‘war crimes’, which violate the most fundamental laws of international order. We must defend these laws at any cost because the consequences for the victims, and humanity, are too grave to accept.” Mr Didier Reynders, EU Commissioner for Justice.
In two weeks, you will explore the past, present and future of international criminal law (ICL). ICL helps to ensure accountability for the most serious crimes, such as genocide, war crimes, and crimes against humanity. These crimes have a profound impact on individuals, communities, and entire societies, and it is important to hold those who commit them accountable for their actions.
Our programme provides a comprehensive overview of international crimes, criminal responsibility, immunities and amnesties. We will also cover practical matters in international criminal law, such as victim participation and defence issues. You will thoroughly analyse these topics on both the international and national level. During these two weeks, you will experience the law in practice, by visiting international and national courts and international organisations in The Hague.
Part two: International Legal & Comparative Approaches to Counter-Terrorism (12 June - 23 June)
“Combatting terror must never be used as an excuse for trampling on people’s human rights. We need to firmly ground all counter-terrorism policies and initiatives within human rights. Because when we protect human rights, we are in fact tackling many of the root causes of terrorism.” UN Secretary-General António Guterres, 25 January 2023
Since 9/11 the world is witnessing a large expansion of different approaches and measures to counter-terrorism. Studying the applicable legal framework, and analysing how these are implemented in different countries can help to ensure that counter-terrorism measures are taken in accordance with international law and respect for human rights.
The second part of the summer programme focuses on various international legal & comparative approaches to counter-terrorism. The course will begin by looking into the definitions of terrorism and counter-terrorism, and their evolution since 9/11. You will explore the jus ad bellum and jus in bello in counter-terrorism. We will also look at the role of human rights law, including case studies on the use of armed drones and extraordinary renditions.
Other topics include: (inter)national prosecution, foreign fighters, the role of intelligence in court, countering violent extremism, and rehabilitation and reintegration of foreign fighters. Study visits will complement the programme.