An ICC preliminary examination - how does it work?

Like An ICC Preliminary Examination
Tuesday, January 20, 2015 - 12:34

By Justice Hub

Last week the ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda announced that she will open a preliminary examination into the situation in Palestine. Far from unique, the examination will be added to a list that already includes Afghanistan, Colombia, Nigeria, Georgia, Honduras, Iraq and the Ukraine.

But what exactly does the prosecutor look at in a preliminary investigation?

What else would you like to know about how the ICC works? Let us know by commenting below or writing to us on Facebook or Twitter.


Dear justice hub, thank you for this wonderful post. I hope it is picked up and reproduced by mainstream news organizations. Academic makes a good point, but his discussion is outside the scope of this graphic. He is talking about how a preliminary examination is triggered in the first placen whilst the graphic illustrates how the examination process once already triggered. It is important to note that once an examination is triggered (irrespective of the manner in which it was triggered) it is bound by the Rome statute to follow the evidence wherever it leads.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015 - 22:38
hTuesday, January 20, 2015 - 22:29

Thank you Justice Hub for your efforts. However, you have forgotten an integral and important part of the ICC jurisdiction, which is the fourth part that provides jurisdiction (authority) to the ICC by the UN Security Council in order to commence with its work! See the situation of Sudan and Libya, and how the ICC prosecutor started his/her preliminary examination. Even before the ICC was established, the UN Security Council has conferred jurisdiction to the ad hoc Tribunals such as the ICTY, ICTR etc. under Chapter VII in order to set up their legal/jurisdictional mandate.

Please next time when you provide information related to the substantial or procedural ICC law, do not miss this important jurisdictional linkage between the UN Security Council and the ICC. Indeed, the linkage between these two institutions is like an umbilical cord!

Tuesday, January 20, 2015 - 13:16