Document Type


Publication Date



Case Western Reserve Journal of International Law






Recently, there has been increasing use of the tool of justice/accountability in the peace-building process. Yet, the norms of justice, while increasingly invoked, is seldom defined in the context of peace-building. To understand the role that justice has played and has the potential of playing in the peace-building process, it is important first to define the norm as well as articulate its functions. This article therefore serves as an introduction to The Case Western Reserve Journal of International Law’s “Role of Justice in Building Peace” Symposium Issue by providing a detailed definitional description of the justice norm. In addition, it identifies the variety of functions performed by the norm of justice and the approach of accountability during the peace-building process. This is followed by an examination of the perceived conflict between the approaches of accountability and accommodation, which lies at the core of the common belief that is sometimes necessary to swap justice for peace.



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