Ethics and International Affairs 36 (1):37-63 (2022)

Should Germany be prosecuting crimes committed in Syria pursuant to universal jurisdiction? This article revisits the normative questions raised by UJ—the principle that a state can prosecute serious international crimes such as genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes committed by foreigners outside of its territories—against the backdrop of increasing European UJ proceedings regarding Syrian conflict–related crimes, focusing on Germany as an illustrative example. While existing literature justifies UJ on the basis of universal prohibition of certain atrocities, this creates residual normative issues. Alternatively, this article applies the “two-tiered test” derived from the “dual foundation” thesis of the Eichmann judgment, in which the normative appropriateness of UJ is evaluated against both accounts of universal prohibition and the specific politics surrounding the prosecution. It contends that the large number of Syrian refugees in Germany means that Germany, in particular, should initiate Syrian conflict–related UJ proceedings to prevent continued harm and recognize the political agency of refugees. Ultimately, the article suggests UJ should normatively be thought of as a domestic, rather than international, political event.
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DOI 10.1017/s0892679421000666
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Homo sacer.Giorgio Agamben - 1998 - Problemi 1.
Universal Jurisdiction, Pirates and Vigilantes.Luise K. Müller - 2019 - Critical Review of International Social and Political Philosophy 22 (4):390-411.

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