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International Criminal Law

International Criminal Law (1st edn)

Douglas Guilfoyle
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date: 23 June 2024

p. 2379. Crimes against humanitylocked

p. 2379. Crimes against humanitylocked

  • Douglas GuilfoyleDouglas GuilfoyleAssociate Professor of Law, Monash University


This chapter discusses the definition of crimes against humanity, its underlying offences, and some of the historical and theoretical issues surrounding the offence. It first outlines the evolution of the legal definition of crimes against humanity, which occurred through the statutes of international criminal tribunals. It then deals with the ‘contextual element’ of the offence; considers the prohibited acts that may form the conduct underlying a crime against humanity, with the exception of the complex crime of persecution; and examines the crime of persecution. Finally, it re-considers the question why there should be a separate category of crimes against humanity.

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