The concept of universal jurisdiction: A myth or reality?
Author(s): Tamfuh YN Wilson
Abstract: This article unravels the arguments surrounding the concept of universal jurisdiction. It reveals that universal jurisdiction has undergone both condemnation and commendations from scholars and leaders such that it is not unconventional to question whether it is a myth or a reality. The article studies the different sources, both historical and recent, of the principle of universal jurisdiction. The author exposes how different nations have applied universal jurisdiction using varied legal considerations, and it seems the principle has not yet attained universal acclamation. Thus the aut de dere principle (extradite or prosecute) is discussed as a well as some statutory provisions that justify an application of universality principle. The author analyses major judicial decisions, some of which are quite recent, to establish the persistent application by some states of the principle of universal jurisdiction. The author concludes with some recommendations.