L. van den Herik – Addressing Colonial Crimes through Reparations?

In an unanticipated judgment delivered on 14 September 2011, The Hague Court of First Instance declared the Dutch massacre in Rawagede wrongful, set aside existing statutory limitations, and held that reparations should be awarded to victims. This article argues that the judgment does not directly contribute to state practice in the formation of a concrete rule of customary international law on statutory limitations in reparation cases concerning international crimes. The importance of this case can rather be found at the meta-level in that it functions as leverage for the Dutch state and society to revisit its colonial past.

The article is published in the Journal of International Criminal Justice 10 (2012), 693-705.