chapter  11
19 Pages

The case for collective reparations before the International Criminal Court

ByFRÉDÉRIC MÉGRET

The third meaning of collective reparations is reparations that are awarded to a group or category of persons as such (e.g. a particular ethnic, racial, political or religious group, or civilians) (Rules of Procedures and Evidence 1995), quite independently of the group or category’s legal existence. While these various forms of collective reparations are not necessarily incompatible, the only meaning this chapter is concerned with is the final sense: i.e. reparations for the benefit of a given group in the broad sense, regardless of the way the reparations are administered or whether they in first analysis merely benefit a representative institution rather than the group as such. For example, collective reparations might involve monetary compensation for harm suffered by the community as a whole, or rehabilitation programs that target the group, particularly groups with a symbolic dimension (Mégret 2009). The chapter begins by suggesting that there has been a discreet emphasis on individual reparations in the ICC regime, and finds that focus to be problematic. It goes on to examine several arguments in favor of collective reparations, ultimately offering a strong principled defense of collective reparations.