Policy and Research Papers
Hybrid Tribunals & the Rule of Law: Notes from Bosnia & Herzegovina & Cambodia
Following the establishment of the international ad hoc tribunals, the International Criminal Tribunals for the Former Yugoslavia and Rwanda (ICTY and ICTR respectively), a new model of justice administration emerged at the end of the 1990s through the development of hybrid or internationalised courts. Hybrid tribunals are conceived as a mixture of international and domestic law and staff, as a way to provide the necessary resources and guarantees for justice closer to those whose work matters to most. This paper looks at the two most recent tribunals, the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia (ECCC) and the War Crimes Chamber in the State Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina (WCC) and examines their practice related to the expectations that hybrid tribunals have raised in terms of peacebuilding. Based on the authors’ fieldwork in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Cambodia, this paper focuses particularly on the tribunals’ impact on the rebuilding of the rule of law, the strengthening of public institutions in the countries in which they operate and the perception of the public of their work. It considers the experience of the tribunals so far, problems and ongoing challenges in order to draw some lessons which can impact both their future work and other potential tribunals in post-‐conflict settings.