Comment on the Victims Lecture Question: “Assuming that the ICC chooses to retain victim participation in its processes, how can victims’ representation at the ICC be improved and victims’ rights be protected?”
While I agree that a group application system could be a valuable alternative, the ICC would need to be extremely cautious about the implementation of such a system. As Carla discussed in the lecture, victims of the crimes prosecuted in the ICC can have myriad different grievances and goals for submitting such an application. Some may simply desire the public acknowledgement of and/or apology for the crimes, while others may have the orthogonal desire to participate actively in the court proceedings and make sure their grievances are duly taken into account by members of the court.
It's not even entirely obvious that the current system should be abandoned, despite the large amount of resources and time it requires, if allows for a more sufficient representation of each individual victim than a group system would. Having a single leader for an entire group runs the risk of having the group represented by its most outspoken member, not necessarily the member that best represents the group's interestes as a whole. Especially in an unsupervised setting, this could lead to situations wherein group members are coerced or even threatened to comply with the leader's message.
Overall, it seems that if the system could be implemented in such a way that these potential problems are addressed then it could significantly increase the ICC's efficiency, but otherwise it may be necessary to have retain the current process or a similar variant in order to fully represent victims' needs.
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