Articles 6, 7 and 8, of the Rome Statute deals with genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes that sets out a list of crimes over which the International Criminal Court will have jurisdiction. In order to provide high certainty and clarity regarding the content of each crime, a preparatory commission, which was mandated by the UN General Assembly, finalized a document on Elements of Crimes (“EOC”). The EOC, which was adopted by the Assembly of States Parties, helps to guide the judges and plays a crucial role in the work of International Criminal Court in the interpretation of the provisions on crimes.
The elements of crimes are generally structured in accordance with the following principles:
- as the elements of crimes focus on the conduct, consequences and circumstances associated with each crime, they are generally listed in that order;
- when required, a particular mental element is listed after the affected conduct, consequence or circumstance;
- contextual circumstances are listed last.