News Release: Nuremberg Forum 2021

Nuremberg, Germany – The International Nuremberg Principles Academy (Nuremberg Academy) will convene, from 15 to 16 October 2021, leading experts in international criminal law, and wider public international law, including practitioners and young professionals, for the 6th annual Nuremberg Forum. The virtual conference dedicated to marking the 70th anniversary of the Nuremberg Principles will highlight essential discussions on achievements and challenges of international criminal law. We are using this year the virtual opportunities and welcome interested participants in joining us for this dialogue.

In 1950, Principles of International Law Recognized in the Charter of the Nuremberg Tribunal and in the Judgment of the Tribunal were formulated by the International Law Commission and submitted to the General Assembly of the United Nations. The report with these principles, called the Nuremberg Principles, together with commentaries later appeared in the Yearbook of the International Law Commission. With these principles, the concepts of individual criminal accountability for crimes under international law, end to impunity, equality before the law, fair trial rights were universally recognized. Moreover, the crimes against peace, war crimes and crimes against humanity were defined. The legacy of the Nuremberg Principles extends to other international, internationalized, regional and domestic practices.

The Nuremberg Academy’s mission is to carry forward the legacy of the Nuremberg Principles, and the Nuremberg Forum is providing an excellent platform for reflecting on these principles and the common fight against impunity.

Although never signed into law formally, the Nuremberg Principles mark the consensus among all states, cultures and religions that the gravest crimes committed must not remain unpunished. They thus remain the beacon of hope for ending impunity and for justice for the victims and survivors, said Klaus Rackwitz, the Director of the Nuremberg Academy.

Considering the 70th anniversary of the Nuremberg Principles, the core question for the Nuremberg Forum 2021 is to assess whether the common fight against impunity has been living up to the expectations and standards set out by the Nuremberg Principles. It will seek to understand what challenges, if any, persist in terms of strengthening the common fight against impunity and towards sustainable peace through justice.

Join us in the dialogue advancing international criminal law and reflect on the framework created post-WWII and enforcing the fight against impunity. On the first day, we will reflect on the goals, objectives and system or systems created to enforce or implement the common fight against impunity. During the second day, we take the discussion further and assess whether the current fight against impunity has been living up to the Nuremberg Principles and what challenges, and best practices, can be strengthened to reach the common goal of achieving sustainable peace through justice.

In seven panels, we will discuss the frameworks, achievements, and challenges of international criminal law, combining historical perspective and using international examples. Detailed information on the speakers and the content of the panels is available on the Nuremberg Forum 2021 virtual platform.

The Nuremberg Forum 2021 will build on the Nuremberg Academy’s focus areas and its past conferences. These key focus areas include but are not limited to:

  1. Ending impunity post-WWII and international criminal justice, situating, and understanding the Nuremberg Principles, their formulation, and application;
  2. The meaning of the ‘harm caused to the community as a whole’ – acceptance of international criminal law in different situation countries, and collection of good practices forward;
  3. The objectives of international criminal justice – and understanding of these objectives (and potential benchmarking) to strengthen the rule of law system;
  4. Reflecting on the scope of core international crimes, including aggression;
  5. Understanding the strengths and weaknesses of the system or systems enforcing the Nuremberg Principles, synergies, and complementing roles, and situating the discussion in the wider debate of peace through justice and human rights.

The Nuremberg Forum 2021 aspires to welcome experts from varied backgrounds and fields of expertise to enhance these discussions and identify synergies and cooperation opportunities to help in strengthening accountability for core international crimes. Moreover, it seeks practical, expert-based recommendations and innovative ideas towards addressing the raised and discussed challenges.

We welcome all interested participants, experts, and young professionals to join this discussion, share observations and discuss the development of international criminal law and the implementation and interpretation of the Nuremberg Principles today.

We would like to mark the 70th anniversary with a practical outlook on the ongoing advancements in the field, while reflecting on the importance of these principles in setting out the core guiding values.

To date, more than 400 experts, practitioners and young professionals have registered to participate in the Forum. This count includes 29 highly distinguished speakers representing more than 15 countries. Join us on these two days and help us answer our key questions.

For more questions, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Contact information

Jolana Makraiová, Senior Officer for Interdisciplinary Research
International Nuremberg Principles Academy
Bärenschanzstrasse 72, 90429 Nuremberg, Germany
Phone: +49 911 14 89 77 - 26
E-Mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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