Introduction: Assessing the legacy of the special court for Sierra Leone Book

Jalloh, CC. (2011). Introduction: Assessing the legacy of the special court for Sierra Leone . 1-20. 10.1017/CBO9781139248778.003

cited authors

  • Jalloh, CC



  • The Context Since the end of the Cold War, various types of ad hoc criminal tribunals have been established in different parts of the world with varying degrees of success. Although the UN Security Council–created International Criminal Tribunals for the Former Yugoslavia (ICTY) and Rwanda (ICTR) were the modern pioneers, and are therefore better known, the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) followed not long afterward and quickly began to carve out its own place in the edifice of modern international criminal law. The SCSL, which was created through a bilateral treaty between the United Nations and the government of Sierra Leone in January 2002, was designed to address the perceived shortcomings of the ICTY and ICTR, in particular, their apparently costly nature; the slow pace of their proceedings; their geographic and emotional distance from the local populations in whose names they were asked to render justice; and their seemingly unfocused prosecutions that sometimes included lower-ranking suspects that some deemed more appropriate for trial within national courts rather than before an international penal tribunal. The coercive Chapter VII legal basis of the twin UN tribunals and the consensual treaty-based character of the SCSL therefore differ markedly, reflecting the particular historical and political circumstances of their establishment.

publication date

  • January 1, 2011

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

International Standard Book Number (ISBN) 13

start page

  • 1

end page

  • 20