- Can the crime of piracy be added to the jurisdiction of the ICC? If so, what is the process for doing so?
- Given the politics around the 2010 ICC review conference (the possibility that the crime of aggression will be added to the ICC’s jurisdiction; the desire on the part of some to add terrorism), how likely is it that the ICC might try pirates in the near future?
- What are the same possibilities for the Law of the Sea Tribunal?
- What are the advantages and disadvantages of using (third party) national governments to try apprehended pirates? How might universal jurisdiction work in practice with regard to the crime of piracy in the current era?
- What alternative governance options exist to prosecute pirates?
- What are the prospects for a special tribunal on piracy? How might this be established? By whom or under whose auspices? Through what processes?
- by coercion through the Security Council (ICTY & ICTR)),
- by consent with a host government (SCSL, ECCC, STL), or
- as part of a transitional administration (Special Panels in East Timor & Kosovo).
The Security Council's action is indeed welcome. Interestingly, so far, the Council has been careful not to identify piracy per se as a threat to the peace. In the Somalia resolutions, the Council designates the situation in Somalia as the threat that is exacerbated by piracy. Several states (including South Africa) are on record opposing the idea that piracy per se constitutes a threat to the peace. China has taken the opposite position. In its Resolution 1918, the Council asks the Secretary General to report on options
to further the aim of prosecuting and imprisoning persons responsible for acts of piracy and armed robbery at sea.No doubt the ASIL/ACUNS/OEF report will feature prominently in this research. Check it out!