Women and Justice: Keywords

Legislation

Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, Article 28 International Criminal Court (1998)

Gender violence in conflict

Article 28.  Responsibility of commanders and other superiors.  Under this provision, military commanders are held criminally responsible for crimes committed by armed forces under their effective command and control, such as rape and any sexual violence used in war.  This applies to instances where the superior knew or should have known about such crimes, or failed to take all necessary and reasonable measures to prevent their commission.  The crimes committed by the armed forces must have been a result of the failure of the commander to properly exercise control over them.  In addition, there must be evidence beyond any reasonable doubt that the commander is responsible and the crimes were sufficiently widespread so that it is evident that they occurred during the ordinary implementation of the military action for which the commander is responsible.  The goal of this provision is to encourage commanders and superiors to prevent effectively the perpetration of crimes by their forces.