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An Analysis of the Objectives of The Special Court For Sierra Leone.

Pamsm-Conteh, Ishmail (2018) An Analysis of the Objectives of The Special Court For Sierra Leone. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

The full text of this thesis is not available.


The objectives of the Special Court for Sierra Leone are contained in United Nations Security Council Resolution 1315 (2000). Summarised as; (a) to hold to account individuals responsible for crimes committed during the country’s conflict, (b) end impunity and contribute to Sierra Leone’s reconciliation and peace process, (c) build a strong and credible court that would meet the objectives of bringing justice, and, (d) to strengthen Sierra Leone’s judicial system. These are the objectives which the research aims to analyse whether they were achieved by the Court. The research methodology is doctrinal. Its findings contend that, the prosecution in using leaders as `insider witnesses`, without prosecuting them, allowed such leaders to evade being held accountable for the crimes they allegedly committed. However, in prosecuting other leaders, it did to some extent achieve that objective. When the period the war officially ended, and when the Court was established, are both considered, it shows that the war ended before the Court was established. Therefore, little evidence was found supporting that the Court contributed to the peace and reconciliation process. Nonetheless, the negotiations leading to establishing the Court may have induced the various armed factions into participating in the disarmament process which eventually ended the conflict. The thesis continues that, the concept of Joint Criminal Enterprise, especially, the `notice pleading`, did not give the accused persons enough notice to plead or build their defences, infringing on their right to a fair trial. Also, the research found that there was little correlation between the country’s national court system and the Special Court. This may be the reason there was little evidence to support that the Court strengthened the country’s judicial system. One of the main criticisms of the Court was its limited prosecutions, which was attributed to its voluntary funding mechanism and perceived short time frame. The thesis argues that, though the funding was problematic, but that on its own, could not have been a significant factor responsible for the limited prosecutions. The findings offer that the Court should be given credit in articulating for the first time the elements of some international crimes, by so doing, contributed significantly to international criminal law theory and practice.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: Special Court for Sierra Leone, United Nations Security Council Resolution 1315(2000), Mandate of the Court, Those Who Bear the Greatest Responsibility, Revolutionary United Front Rebels
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law (Leeds)
Date Deposited: 24 Jun 2019 12:47
Last Modified: 24 Jun 2019 12:47
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/24140

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