ABSTRACT

The International Military Tribunal (‘Nuremberg Tribunal’) and the International Military Tribunal for the Far East (‘Tokyo Tribunal’) were the first genuinely international criminal courts, established to deal with the previously unimaginable atrocities perpetrated in the course of the Second World War. The institutions were a new phenomenon, premised on the prosecution of certain international crimes that hitherto had only been vaguely defined, if at all: crimes against peace, war crimes and crimes against humanity. These offences were addressed to the protection of fundamental values of humanity rather than collective or bilateral issues involved in suppression of what were in substance relatively ordinary crimes like piracy.