In a vivid and gripping style, and with unique insights, Lingsma tells the story of this prestigious court, that started in 2002 and now has 124 member states. In thematic chapters she portrays its history, functioning, the work of the prosecutor, life in detention, and the precarious situation of witnesses and victims. Lingsma describes in separate chapters the dramatic cases against suspects of international crimes in Kenya, Democratic Republic of Congo, Central African Republic, Ivory Coast and Libya.
But reality proves to be harsh. Despite all hopes, the ICC hasn’t fulfilled its ambition. So far it has convicted four persons for international crimes, while cases against no fewer than nine suspects failed. The court, which has cost 1.5 billion euros by now, is damaged by government obstruction, intimidation of witnesses, its own failures and member states threatening to withdraw.
All Rise is the sobering account of a court that could not live up to its expectations. But with its important task to bring justice, it is too valuable to fail.
The Dutch edition of All Rise, which was published in December 2014, was shortlisted for the Brusse Prize - for best journalistic book in The Netherlands