420. Command and other superior responsibility.

Military commanders and civilian superiors may be criminally responsible for crimes under customary international law committed by their subordinates when they fail to prevent, put a stop to or punish such crimes1. This mode of responsibility is a form of criminal responsibility by omission2. Command and other superior responsibility is separate from responsibility for ordering the commission of a crime3.

The Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court provides:


    (1)     a military commander or person effectively acting as a military commander shall be criminally responsible for crimes within the jurisdiction of the Court committed by forces under his or her