This chapter begins by discussing the importance of March 24, 1999 in the contemporary history of international law and international relations. It then explains that on that day, the Judicial Appeals Committee of the House of Lords handed down its judgment in the Pinochet Case, holding that General Augusto Pinochet had no immunity for acts of torture allegedly committed while he was head of state in Chile during the 1970s and 1980s. It notes that this book aims to explore existing debates at the interface between international law and politics, and to add new voices and ideas to an already lively discussion. It explains the scope of the special and general part of the criminal law. It provides a definition and classification for offences.
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