The uncertain promise of hybrid justice in the Central African Republic

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Series Details No.14, September 2015
Publication Date September 2015
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The decision taken by the Central African Republic government in 2015 to create a Special Criminal Court to prosecute crimes committed during the conflict that started in 2012 offers promised of long-delayed justice. Faced with a legacy of long running armed conflict, poor governance structures, and numerous human rights violations – especially during the latest bout of fighting in 2012-2014 – a Special Criminal Court would significantly contribute to promoting accountability and redress for victims and support peace-building in the country. However, significant challenges faced the future court if it was to fulfil this promise. This policy paper highlights four such challenges, relating to capacity needs, ongoing insecurity, the Court’s relationship with the ICC, and its investigative focus. Addressing these from the outset may prove crucial in ensuring the court’s effectiveness and legitimacy.

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