The Summer Collection 2023 – Justice Via the Backdoor with Kevin Jon Heller

To kick off the summer collection of 2023 we’re transporting you all the way back to episode 7 which aired in 2019. Much has changed since then but the case discussed in this episode stays just as interesting and complex as ever.

Kevin Jon Heller

With the help of Kevin Jon Heller, we try to untangle a complex story of ICC jurisdiction. In July 2019 the office of the prosecutor requested authorisation to open an investigation into crimes committed by Myanmar. This was quite surprising considering that Myanmar is not a state party to the ICC. The OTP argued that because elements of the crimes had taken place in the territory of Bangladesh, which is a signatory to the Rome Statute, that jurisdiction could be granted to the court.

A girl is seen in Balukhali camp on 5 March 2018. As of January 2018, UN Women has set up the first Multi-Purpose Women’s Centre in the Balukhali refugee camp in Cox’s Bazar, in partnership with Action Aid and with support from UN Women National Committee Australia. Photo: UN Women/Allison Joyce

In November 2019 judges ruled that the OTP could open investigations into crimes committed by Myanmar given that at least some part of the crime has been committed on the territory of Bangladesh. Myanmar has also been the focus of wider legal movements through processes of universal jurisdiction. In an episode aired earlier this year we looked at the criminal complaint which was filed in Germany by the NGO Fortify Rights earlier this year.

Also in this episode Stephanie let slip her addiction, at the time, to an inaccurate and ridiculous international courtroom drama, Crossing Lines. Despite all its flaws, she does recommend it for a good laugh. Continuing the theme of international justice and Hollywood, Black Earth Rising was also among the recommendations for this episode.