Antonio Cassese: The Stubborn Sparrow

Episode 1: Genocide and the Commission of Inquiry on Darfur

Episode Summary

This episode discusses the findings on genocide and working methods of the UN Commission of Inquiry in Darfur, which Antonio Cassese chaired in 2004-2005. Paola Gaeta and Salvatore Zappalà interview Fannie Lafontaine, who worked with Antonio Cassese as his legal assistant at the time.

Episode Notes

The co-hosts, Paola Gaeta and Salvatore Zappalà, introduce the UN Commission of Inquiry on Darfur that was established by the UN Security Council in 2004 and was chaired by Antonio Cassese, and its final Report, which famously found no evidence that the government of Sudan was committing genocide in Darfur at the time. Antonio Cassese himself explains, through his own voice, what is genocide and the difference between genocide and persecution as a crime against humanity. The co-hosts then welcome the guest of this episode, Fannie Lafontaine, who worked for the Commission as special assistant to Antonio Cassese. In a dialogue with the co-hosts, Fannie explores a variety of issues related to the Commission’s findings, the referral of the situation in Darfur to the International Criminal Court, the indictment of the then President of Sudan (Omar Al Bashir) and the working methods of Antonio Cassese within the Commission. 


- Nino explains the meaning of genocide and the difference between genocide and the crime against humanity of persecution, while delivering the Judgement in Kupreškić et al. (14 January 2000, audio & video on ICTY youtube channel)

- Report of the International Commission of Inquiry on Darfur to the United Nations Secretary-General, 2005


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Credits for the production go to Janet Anderson, Stephanie van den Berg and Ilaria Molinari. The logo for this podcast has been designed by