Exceptional Criminal Cases

War Crime

Following coordinated efforts between the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), the Ligue des droits de l’Homme, and the Syrian Center for Media and Freedom of Expression, a former spokesperson for the Syrian armed group Jaysh Al Islam was placed under investigation in January 2020 for complicity in these crimes.

YL Avocats is representing FIDH, one of the civil parties in this case.

The accused raised the issue of the French jurisdiction’s incompetence to adjudicate the acts attributed to him.

After a hearing before the Investigative Chamber of the Paris Court of Appeals, which had rejected his requests, he lodged an appeal to the Court of Cassation.

In two judgments issued on May 12, 2023, the Court of Cassation followed the reasoning developed by FIDH and confirmed the competence of French jurisdictions to adjudicate war crimes, crimes against humanity, and torture committed in Syria.

These decisions, eagerly anticipated by Syrian victims as well as numerous other victims of international crimes, establish a non-restrictive interpretation of the conditions for the application of universal jurisdiction and pave the way for the continuation of ongoing proceedings on this basis.