Observer at the trial of Adolf Eichmann

The ICJ has requested Dr. Pierre A. Papadatos, attorney at the Court of Appeal of Athens, to act as its observer at the trial of Adolf Eichmann which is to begin in Jerusalem on April 11, 1961.

Dr. Papadatos has accepted this assignment and will represent the Commission at the trial.

Observer missions are one of the diverse means by which the International Commission of Jurists gathers direct information on situations and legal developments affecting the fundamental principles of the Rule of Law. Most recently, the Commission was represented by Professor Edvard Hambro of Norway at the trial of the leaders of the conspiracy in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in February 1961, and by attorney Silverio Coppa of Rome at the political trial of nine leading intellectuals at Madrid, Spain, in March 1961. Observers of the Commission were also present at various stages of the South African Treason Trial which began in August 1958 and ended on March 29, 1961, with the acquittal of all defendants.

The International Commission of Jurists is a non-governmental and non-political organisation which has Consultative Status, Category “B”, with the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations and represents some 39,000 members of the legal community in 62 countries of the world. Its main objective is – through practical action – to clarify, promote and defend the Rule of Law, to strengthen the legal procedures and institutions associated therewith in those countries where the Rule of Law is already established and to obtain its acceptance wherever it is denied. Among its latest undertakings was the organisation of an African Conference on the Rule of Law, held in January, 1961, in Lagos, Nigeria, where a great number of jurists met to discuss several topics relating to the administration of justice and fundamental human rights in the new states of Africa.

In 1960 the International Commission of Jurists issued a detailed report entitled South Africa and the Rule of Law as well as the findings of its Legal Inquiry Committee on Tibet contained in the report Tibet and the Chinese People’s Republic.

At present Dr. Jean-Flavien Lalive, Secretary-General, and Mr. Edward S. Kozera, Administrative Secretary of the International Commission of Jurists, are visiting 17 countries in Latin America and the West Indies Federation. They are meeting with jurists in that area of the world to explain in detail the purposes of the Commission and to examine the legal systems of the respective countries. Furthermore, they will explore the possibilities of establishing National Sections or affiliates of the Commission where these do not already exist. They will also make preliminary arrangements for a World Congress of Jurists which it is hoped will be held in Latin America in 1962.

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