International Standards for the Nomination of Judges to the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia for the Prosecution of Crimes Committed during the period of Democratic Kampuchea

This project was funded by the Open Society Institute and produced in collaboration with Open Society Justice Initiative.

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Executive Summary
February 2004
Presented by the Working Group on the Extraordinary Chambers and the Open Society Justice Initiative:

  • Selecting judges based on objective criteria and through an open and fair appointment process is critical to the establishment of a competent, independent and impartial tribunal.
  • Candidates must be persons of "high moral character, impartiality and integrity." (Articles 3.3 and 5.2 of UN-Cambodia Agreement)
  • Candidates must be committed to being "independent in the performance of their functions and shall not accept or seek instructions from any Government or any other source." (Articles 3.3 and 5.3 of UN-Cambodia Agreement; Article 10 of the Law on the Extraordinary Chambers)
  • Judges should not be chosen from among persons who are likely to be repeatedly disqualified from cases.
  • Candidates must possess the "qualifications required in their respective countries for appointment to judicial office." (Articles 3.3 and 5.2 of UN-Cambodia Agreement)
  • Candidates should have experience in "criminal law or international law, including international humanitarian law and human rights law." (Article 3.4 of UN-Cambodia Agreement)
  • Candidates should reflect the experience and stature of the most qualified and respected judges in their respective jurisdictions.
  • Candidates should be selected through an open and fair appointment process.

Open Society Justice Initiative Mission Statement
The Open Society Justice Initiative, an operational program of the Open Society Institute, promotes rights-based law reform, builds knowledge, and strengthens legal capacity worldwide. Justice Initiative projects seek to shape law reform policy and achieve concrete results through hands-on technical assistanace, litigation and legal services, knowledge dissemination and network building, and counsel to donor institutions. The Justice Initiative works in the following thematic areas: national criminal justice reform, international justice, freedom of information and expression, equality and citizenship, and anticorruption. The Justice Initiative has offices in New York, Budapest, and Abuja, Nigeria.