The high ambition of the International Criminal Court and
the harsh reality
On a grey, cold day in January 2011 Tjitske Lingsma visits the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague, The Netherlands. She hears the heart-breaking testimony of a lady who tells the court how she was savagely gang raped, how her house and neighbourhood were looted and her brother was killed. After this first visit Lingsma decides to follow the ICC, inspired by the court’s noble task to bring justice for victims, to fight impunity and to go after perpetrators of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.
In a vivid and gripping style, and with unique insights, Lingsma tells the story of this prestigious court, that started in 2002 and now has 124 member states. In thematic chapters she portrays its history, functioning, the work of the prosecutor, life in detention, and the precarious situation of witnesses and victims. Lingsma describes in separate chapters the dramatic cases against suspects of international crimes in Kenya, Democratic Republic of Congo, Central African Republic, Ivory Coast and Libya.
The high ambitions of the International Criminal Court and the harsh reality
Design by Helma Timmermans
Published: 6 september 2017
155 x 230 mm
Price: Dutch bookstores € 29,95
Price: amazon.com $27,75 (ex shipping costs)
E-Book: available on Amazon.com, price $17,75
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New! International & updated edition of All Rise
But reality proves to be harsh. Despite all hopes, the ICC hasn’t fulfilled its ambition. So far it has convicted four persons for international crimes, while cases against no fewer than nine suspects failed. (Another five persons have been found guilty of witness intimidation.) The court, which has cost 1.5 billion euros by now, is damaged by government obstruction, intimidation of witnesses, its own failures and member states threatening to withdraw.
'All Rise' is the sobering account of a court that could not live up to its expectations. With its important task it is, however, too valuable to fail.
Tjitske Lingsma is a senior freelance journalist specialising in international justice. She brings years of experience, including overseas assignments and war reporting.
This international edition of All Rise is not only a translation, but also an update of the Dutch edition, which was shortlisted for the Brusse Prize - for best journalistic book of 2014 in The Netherlands. Lingsma’s book ‘The Sorrow of Ambon. A history of the Moluccas’ (2008, only in Dutch) won the prestigious Dick Scherpenzeel Award.