In the Dock: Defence Rights at the ICC – a new IBA film

A new documentary about the International Criminal Court (ICC) was recently premiered in The Hague by the International Bar Association (IBA). In the Dock: Defence Rights at the ICC is a 27-minute educational film that covers a number of subjects including the presumption of innocence, fair trial guarantees and the right to counsel.

The film is informed by interviews with defence counsel currently practicing before the ICC, international criminal law experts, and elected officials of the ICC, including ICC President Sang-Hyun Song; ICC Chief Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo; ICC Registrar Silvana Arbia; and the Former Chief Prosecutor at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda, Richard Goldstone.

Through the 13 experts interviewed in the film, In the Dock provides a cross section of perspectives on defence issues. Viewers are presented with the opportunity to expand their understanding of the workings of the International Criminal Court via the narratives of individuals who work there. The film is likely to appeal to a broad audience of established legal professionals, academics, students, and those with a general interest in ICC work.

IBA Executive Director, Mark Ellis, commented on the documentary: ‘We hope the film will help attorneys gain insight on the challenges associated with practicing international criminal law.’ He added: ‘The IBA recognises that a trial’s fairness is multi-dimensional. “In the Dock” brings to light issues that need to be addressed in order to ensure that the rights of suspects and accused are respected.’

In addition to the challenges facing counsel and the Court, In the Dock also highlights the dedication of those who work at the ICC and the continued collaboration between the IBA and the ICC on important projects. These include the Calling African Female Lawyers Campaign which aims to encourage more African female lawyers to sign up to the ICC Lists of Counsel and Assistants to Counsel. Featured in the footage is one such lawyer who answered the call and is now fully immersed in the work of the ICC.

In the Dock: Defence Rights at the ICC premiered in The Hague on Tuesday 17 May 2011 as part of the Ninth Seminar of Counsel organised by the ICC Registry.

Click here to watch the IBA film. Alternatively, visit the IBA website at:




For further information please contact:

Romana St. Matthew - Daniel
Press Office

International Bar Association
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Liliana De Marco Coenen
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International Bar Association

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Tel +31 (0)70 302 2827

Notes for the Editor

The ICC Seminar of Counsel

The International Criminal Court (ICC) Seminar of Counsel is an annual event organised by the Registry of the ICC which constitutes the primary forum for interaction between the legal community engaged with the ICC and the Court itself.  The 250 participants at the Seminar primarily included counsel from the List of Counsel, but also defence teams currently before the court, representatives of international legal associations, non-government organisations and international ad hoc tribunals.

This year the Seminar addressed issues including disciplinary proceedings under the ICC Code of Professional Conduct for counsel, engaging with the legal profession, and other defence issues.

IBA/ICC Calling African Female Lawyers Campaign
The Calling African Female Lawyers Campaign is a joint project of the IBA and ICC Registry which aims to increase the number of female African lawyers registered to practice before the ICC.  The campaign was launched in 2010 in response to the underrepresentation of females, particularly African females, on the ICC List of Counsel and List of Assistants to Counsel.  In January 2010, when the campaign was planned, only 61 of a total of 335 Counsel registered to practice before the ICC were women.  As of May 2011, there are now 93 female lawyers including 31 African female lawyers on the List of Counsel, and 58 female lawyers on the List of Assistants to Counsel.