Experts to discuss legacy of Nazi war crimes investigations

By Jewish Chronicle Reporter, August 9, 2013
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The legacy of the United Nations commission which investigated Nazi war crimes is to be discussed at a conference held in London next month.

Experts will examine how the work of the commission, which ran from 1943-48, has influenced contemporary efforts to promote international criminal justice and human rights advocacy.

The keynote speaker will be Justice Richard Goldstone, with other guests including human rights law expert Professor William Schabas and Dr Mark Ellis, director of the International Bar Association .

In their discussions they will be able to draw on thousands of Nazi-era war crimes cases which are now available online following a campaign led by Dr Dan Plesch, chair of the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy.

More than 2,200 documents from an archive housed at the United Nations can now be accessed following an agreement between the International Criminal Court and the UN.

Dr Plesch said: "The international community needs to consider the Second World War practice of prosecuting the foot soldiers of atrocity not just the leaders."

The conference, entitled Reinforcing International Human Rights Standards: Lessons from the United Nations War Crimes Commission, is hosted by SOAS and the International Bar Association, and marks the 70th anniversary of the war crime commission.

Last updated: 10:18am, August 9 2013