GENOCIDE CONVENTION ACT 1949
SECT. 1. Short title.
An Act to approve of Ratification by Australia of
the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, and
for other purposes.
1. This Act may be cited as the Genocide Convention Act 1949.*
SECT. 2. Commencement.
2. This Act shall come into operation on the day on which it receives the
SECT. 3. Definition.
3. In this Act-
''the Genocide Convention'' means the Convention on the Prevention and
Punishment of the Crime of Genocide approved by the General Assembly of the
United Nations at Paris on the ninth day of December, One thousand nine
hundred and forty-eight, the text of which convention in the English language
is set out in the Schedule to this Act.
SECT. 4. Approval of ratification.
4. Approval is hereby given to the depositing with the Secretary-General of
the United Nations of an instrument of ratification of the Genocide Convention
SECT. 5. Approval of extension to Territories.
5. Approval is hereby given to the depositing with the Secretary-General of
the United Nations of a notification by Australia, in accordance with Article
twelve of the Genocide Convention, extending the application of the Genocide
Convention to all the territories for the conduct of whose foreign relations
Australia is responsible.
[the text of the schedule is the official English text of the Convention for the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide ]
*Act No. 27, 1949; assented to and commenced 12 July 1949.
War Crimes Act 1945 (Cth), No. 48, 1945
Part II - Interpretation
7.(1) A serious crime is a war crime if it was committed:
(a) in the course of hostilities in a war;
(b) in the course of an occupation;
(c) in pursuing a policy associated with the conduct of a war or with an occupation; or
(d) on behalf of, or in the interests of, a power conducting a war or engaged in an occupation.
(2) For the purposes of subsection (1), a serious crime was not committed:
(a) in the course of hostilities in a war; or
(b) in the course of an occupation; merely because the serious crime had with the hostilities or occupation a connection (whether in time, in time and place, or otherwise) that was only incidental or remote.
(3) A serious crime is a war crime if it was:
(i) in the course of political, racial or religious persecution; or
(ii) with intent to destroy in whole or in part a national, ethnic, racial or religious group, as such; and
(b) committed in the territory of a country when the country was involved in a war or when territory of the country was subject to an occupation.
(4) Two or more serious crimes together constitute a war crime if:
(a) they are of the same or a similar character;
(b) they form, or are part of, a single transaction or event; and
(c) each of them is also a war crime by virtue of either or both of subsections (1) and (3).
Source: Australasian Legal Information Institute - Commonwealth Numbered Acts
VICTORIAN COUNCIL FOR CIVIL LIBERTIES SUBMISSIONS TO the Senate Legal and Constitutional References Committee Inquiry into the Anti-Genocide Bill 1999 (Cth.) Victorian Council for Civil Liberties Sub-Committee on Genocide Steven Tudor, Anne O’Rourke and Colin Campbell 10 February 2000
Joint Standing Committee on Treaties -- Inquiry into the 1998 Statute for an International Criminal Court second hearing 13 February 2001 9:00 am - 4:00 pm Room 814/815 Parliament House, Sydney Public Hearing
Ben Saul, The International Crime of Genocide in Australian Law, Sydney Law Review Vol 22 no 4 (Dec. 2000) 527-584 www.law.usyd.edu.au/~slr/v22/n4/saul.pdf Article addresses Autralia's "failure to criminalise genocide domestically". The aritcle can also be found in html format at this alternate location www.geocities.com/ben_saul/GenocideInAustralianLaw.htm Saul is also the author of the articles ‘Punishing Genocide in Australia’ (2000) Union Recorder (University of Sydney, Australia) and ‘Was the conflict in East Timor “genocide” and why does it matter?’ (2001) 2(2) Melbourne Journal of International Law 477
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