Humanitarian interventions trapped in the crime of aggression : Humanitarian interventions through the lens of article 8bis in the Rome Statute

University essay from Försvarshögskolan

Abstract: The purpose of this thesis is to examine interventions under the doctrine of R2P without appropriate legal authority becomes coercive actions of Unilateral Humanitarian Intervention. And that a unilateral humanitarian intervention would amount to the crime of aggression.   The R2P doctrine states that sovereignty is derived from the responsibility for a population. The responsibility to protect is primarily on the state. In the event of a failure to protect a human population the responsibility is transferred to the international community of states.According to the doctrine of Humanitarian Interventions it exists a third exception to the use of force, which allows states to legally intervene in the event of a humanitarian catastrophe.  This thesis will first examine the link between R2P and Unilateral Humanitarian Intervention. Secondly, the legal status of Unilateral Humanitarian interventions will be examined, and how Unilateral Humanitarian Intervention can fulfil the elements of the crime of aggression. The last part examines if Unilateral Humanitarian Intervention can constitute ‘defensive force of others’ as grounds to exclude criminal responsibility, in the event of an ICC criminal trial for the crime of aggression.The thesis concludes that a person subject to a criminal prosecution for the crime of aggression in the event of Unilateral Humanitarian Intervention, could successfully argue ‘defensive force of others’ as grounds to exclude criminal responsibility. 

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