African Efforts to Close the Impunity Gap Lessons for Complementarity from National and Regional Actions

"The aim of this paper is to highlight some of the successes and challenges of domestic and regional international criminal justice processes in Africa. That discussion might be framed as one about ‘complementarity’ in a broad sense – the idea that states act as a complement to the International Criminal Court (ICC) to make the world a smaller place for genocidaires and war criminals. As will be seen, the idea of complementarity advanced in this paper and played out in the African examples covered below goes beyond the standard, technical understanding of complementarity as contained in the Rome Statute of the ICC. The idea of complementarity discussed here is less focused on how states work as a direct complement to the ICC (although that remains important), and is rather concerned with what they are doing to further the international criminal justice project more generally, which could (and has of late) include(d) domestic and regional cooperation efforts by states and civil society organisations."