Legal News

Timbuktu breakthrough for cultural justice

Published on: 07 October 2016
Published by: LexisPSL
  • Timbuktu breakthrough for cultural justice
  • Briefly, what is the background to this case, and do you think it would have been successful without a guilty plea?
  • Under what circumstances can the ICC try someone for destroying cultural property? Are there any issues around evidence gathering, etc?
  • What about destruction of cultural property where people are acting under the instructions of those in power?
  • This was the first time the ICC prosecuted someone for destroying cultural property—what are the difficulties with this?
  • Will we likely see more cases like this? Is the law around this area sufficiently developed?
  • How have crimes like this been addressed in the past? Do you think this will inspire countries to seek prosecution for such war crimes on a national level (eg, where the ICC does not have jurisdiction)?

Article summary

Public Law analysis: Jihadi Ahmad Al Faqi Al Mahdi has become the first person to plead guilty before the International Criminal Court (ICC), admitting to war crimes charges in relation to the destruction of the world heritage sites at Timbuktu. Wayne Jordash and Kateryn Busol of London’s Doughty Street Chambers discuss whether the destruction of buildings and monuments constitutes a war crime and the approach the ICC took in the case. or take a trial to read the full analysis.

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