Trial Justice

About the Author

Dr Tim Allen Is a Reader at the London School of Economics and Programme Director of the post-graduate programme in Development Studies.

The International Criminal Court and the Lord’s Resisatnce Army

There is no doubt that appalling crimes have occurred here. Over a million people have been forced to live in overcrowded displacement camps under the control of the Ugandan army. Joseph Kony’s Lord’s Resistance Army has abducted thousands, many of them children and has systematically tortured, raped, maimed and killed. Nevertheless, the ICC has confronted outright hostility from a wide range of groups, including traditional leaders, representatives of the Christian Churches and non-governmental organizations. Even the Ugandan government, which invited the court to become involved, has been expressing serious reservations.

Tim Allen assesses the controversy. While recognizing the difficulties involved, he shows that much of the antipathy towards the ICC’s intervention is misplaced. He also draws out important wider implications of what has happened. Criminal justice sets limits to compromise and undermines established procedures of negotiation with perpetrators of violence. Events in Uganda have far reaching implications for other war zones – and not only in Africa. Amnesties and peace talks may never be quite the same again.


‘ excellent book on the northern Uganda conflict…’ – Carlos Rodriguez, Ugandan Observer

‘…excellent and very up-to-date book…Tim Allen’s book is really valuable. It contains a wealth of background material, and firsthand interview material gathered in northern Uganda, on the issue of the interaction between the ICC and the situation [in Uganda].’ – Posted by Helena Cobban on ‘Just World News’

‘For those engaged in efforts to improve the lives of people in the north, this book is an informative read. For those who are engaged in the punditry business, it is an imperative…[Allen] brings out all of the issues and engages in a detailed analysis of the diverse views on justice and reconciliation especially for and among the Acholi people with particular reference to the ICC.’ – the Sunday Vision (Uganda)