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United Nations Justice

Legal and Judicial Reform in Governance Operations

United Nations Justice by Calin Trenkov-Wermuth
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At the end of the 20th century, and at the dawn of the 21st, the United Nations was tasked with the administration of justice in territories placed under its executive authority, an undertaking for which there was no established precedent or doctrine. Examining the UN’s legal and judicial reform efforts in Kosovo and East Timor, this volume argues that rather than helping to establish a sustainable legal system, the UN’s approach detracted from it, as it confused ends with means. In the process, justice standards were sacrificed for the sake of prosecutions; the legal vacuum was not filled effectively; the UN’s desire to create functioning courts exceeded its efforts to deal with detainees; local ownership was erroneously regarded as a means to the end of achieving a sustainable legal system; and the UN’s adoption of rights standards unsuited to the circumstances led it to break its own laws. As a result, instead of easing key tensions at the heart of governance operations, the UN’s approach aggravated them.Dr. Calin Trenkov-Wermuth offers the first full account of the UN’s endeavours with the administration of justice in governance operations. He also suggests some methods by which these efforts can be improved upon. Relevant audiences include academics and practitioners in multiple disciplines: international law, political science, ethics and applied philosophy, and transitional justice.
United Nations University Press; January 2010
243 pages; ISBN 9789280871425
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Title: United Nations Justice
Author: Calin Trenkov-Wermuth