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The University of California at Los Angeles School of Law has launched an Internet-based law forum with the International Criminal Court that focuses on the prosecution of war criminals. The Human Rights & International Criminal Law Online Forum, launched on Wednesday, is spearheaded by Richard Steinberg, a law professor at UCLA and director of the law school’s Sanela Diana Jenkins Human Rights Project, launched last year with a gift from the human rights activist and Sarajevo refugee. The online forum, operated by six students in one of the project’s clinics, grew out of conversations that Steinberg had with ICC Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo. “The International Criminal Court is a new legal institution. New legal institutions face all sorts of very difficult questions of law and practice. And the answers to these questions are not at all obvious. And Mr. Moreno-Ocampo believes he would benefit from having a set of global perspectives on key problems that he faces,” Steinberg said. “That’s of great interest to me, as well, and the Sanela Diana Jenkins Human Rights Project and the students in the clinic, because they’re all interested in advancing international justice and human rights.” The online forum is open to visitors, he said. Its first subject: Does the ICC prosecutor have the authority to open an investigation into alleged crimes committed in the 2008-’09 Gaza conflict? The forum features opinion pieces by numerous experts including George Fletcher, a professor at Columbia Law School; Marlies Glasius, senior lecturer at the University of Amsterdam; Michael Kearney, legal researcher at Palestinian human rights organization Al-Haq; John Quigley, a professor at Ohio State University Michael E. Moritz College of Law; and Yaël Ronen, assistant professor at Sha’arei Mishpat College in Israel. Future topics will address genocide charges against Omar Hassan Ahmad al-Bashir, president of the Sudan, and gang rape by militias in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Darfur.

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