Knowledge of the international character of the armed conflict

Notion(s) Filing Case
Appeal Judgement - 03.05.2006 NALETILIĆ & MARTINOVIĆ

Paras 109-122: relying on the Tadić Jurisdiction Decision, the Appeals Chamber recalled in para. 112 that the “international armed conflict” element has been incorporated into Article 2 of the Statute. It found that, if certain conduct becomes a crime under the Statute only if it occurs in an international armed conflict, then the existence of such a conflict is not only a jurisdictional element, but also a substantive element of the crime. Relying on the Kordić and Čerkez Appeal Judgement, para. 311, but more importantly on the principle of individual guilt which requires that an accused can only be convicted for a crime if his mens rea comprises the actus reus of the crime (paras 113-114), the Appeals Chamber found that the Prosecution needs to prove the accused’s knowledge of the facts pertinent to/establishing the internationality of the armed conflict (paras 116, 121). However, it is of course not required that the accused correctly subsume these facts into a particular legal characterisation. 

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ICTR Statute Article 4 ICTY Statute Article 2