Spotlight: Chasing Justice for Syria

PRIF-Spotlight by Caroline Fehl and Eliška Mocková on roadblocks and detours on the path to accountability for Syria

Carla del Ponte, former member of the Independent Commission of Inquiry on the Syrian Arab Republic (Photo: picture alliance/AP Photo)

On 7 August, she finally had enough. Carla del Ponte, former UN Prosecutor for the Former Yugoslavia and Rwanda, told reporters that she was stepping down as a member of the Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Syria. Since 2011, the UN panel has meticulously documented mass atrocities committed by all sides of the Syrian war. And yet, its investigations have not led to the creation of any tribunal or court, prompting Del Ponte to denounce it as an “alibi” for the international community. 

Why has criminal accountability – as a major element in the broader search for justice – remained so elusive in Syria? Which pathways, both well-trodden and novel, have been tried to circumvent political roadblocks? Where could the international community still do more?

In the new PRIF SPOTLIGHT "Chasing Justice for Syria. Roadblocks and detours on the path to accountability", Caroline Fehl and Eliška Mocková describe the difficulties and pathways of taking Syrian perpetrators to court.

Download (pdf, 1,2mb): Fehl, Caroline/Mocková, Eliška (2017): Chasing Justice for Syria. Roadblocks and detours on the path to accountability, PRIF Spotlight 5/2017, Frankfurt/M.

The publication series PRIF SPOTLIGHT replaces the former HSFK-Standpunkte. PRIF SPOTLIGHT is free of charge and available as PDF-Download or printed version.