Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) and the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC)
At its 36th meeting (London, 7-8 October 2008), the CAHDI decided to include on its agenda the discussion of two new "hybrid" or "mixed" tribunals, the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) and the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia.
Since that meeting, the item on international criminal tribunals has been entitled "Implementation and functioning of other international criminal tribunals (ICTY, ICTR, Sierra Leone, Lebanon, Cambodia)".
Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL)
Although established by Security Council Resolution 1315 (2000) on 14 August 2000, the Special Court for Sierra Leone was not officially set up until July 2002. It is a "hybrid" or "mixed" tribunal based both on Sierra Leonean law and on international law and comprising national and international judges.
The SCSL has jurisdiction to prosecute persons who bear the greatest responsibility for serious violations of international humanitarian law and Sierra Leonean law committed in the territory of Sierra Leone since 30 November 1996, including those leaders who, in committing such crimes, have threatened the establishment of and implementation of the peace process in Sierra Leone.
Under Articles 2 to 5 of its Statute, the crimes falling within the jurisdiction ratione materiae of the Court are crimes against humanity, violations of Article 3 common to the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and of Additional Protocol II to the Geneva Conventions of 1949, other serious violations of international humanitarian law and crimes under Sierra Leonean law.
Articles 1 and 6 set out the jurisdiction ratione personae of the Court, modelled on the ICTY and the ICTR. A special feature of the Statute is found in Article 7, which provides that the Court has no jurisdiction over persons aged under 15 years at the time of the alleged crimes.
Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC)
In 1997, the Cambodian government sought the assistance of the United Nations to bring to trial senior Khmer Rouge leaders. In 2001, the Cambodian National Assembly passed a law establishing Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia. In 2003, an agreement was concluded detailing how the international community would assist and participate in the Extraordinary Chambers, leading to the exercise of their judicial functions in 2007.
Under Article 1 of the law, the purpose of the Chambers is to bring to trial senior leaders of Democratic Kampuchea and those who were most responsible for the crimes and serious violations of Cambodian penal law, international humanitarian law and custom, and international conventions recognised by Cambodia, that were committed during the period from 17 April 1975 to 6 January 1979.
Article 2 of the law repeats the above and sets out the jurisdiction ratione personae of the Chambers.
Their jurisdiction ratione materiae is set out in Articles 3 to 8 and covers the crimes in the Cambodian Penal Code, genocide, crimes against humanity, grave breaches of the Geneva Conventions of 1949, the destruction of cultural property and crimes against internationally protected persons.