by Nicole Tarantino
On Thursday, Feb. 28, history students and criminal justice students at CHS had the opportunity to attend a presentation by Mr. Tahr Besong Frambo, Foreign Affairs Secretary for the Ministry of External relations for the Republic of Cameroon.
Mr. Frambo spoke about International Criminal Court system and how it operates. There are fifteen elected judges who work to prosecute any activity that has a negative impact on the dignity of individuals and human rights violations.
International law has transitioned from being state-centered to being people-centered. This means that there is a focus on protecting the individual’s dignity and human rights. The focus is no longer on justice for man, but rather justice for humanity.
Frambo explained that when a state is unwilling or unable to prosecute, the other states must intervene and issue an international warrant/summons. He used an analogy of a bully in a classroom, stating that if the bully overpowers the classroom and the class cannot bring him to justice, other students would have to intervene.
In cases such as genocide and crimes against humanity, people can experience a period of trauma when they try to understand what they have been through. After massive human rights abuses, humans have the right to know the truth, to receive reparations if possible, and to see that the persecutors be punished.
The five ways of obtaining justice are restitution, compensation, rehabilitation, satisfaction (search for truth/recover missing people), and guarantee of non-repetition.
In a place where everything has been destroyed and lives have been lost, a process of reconstruction must take place. Whether the problem stemmed from too much power obtained by an individual, or a weak military; something must have been wrong to cause the conflict, and measures are taken to re-build.
“It was a worthwhile experience. He was a real expert on the topic of international law. His insight from working in this field made it an interesting presentation,” stated senior Tom Feeney about the presentation.
We thank Mr. Frambo for delivering an informative presentation and the teachers for making this global opportunity possible.