International Conference on Military Trials : London, 1945
Revised Definition of "Crimes", Prepared by British Delegation and Accepted by French Delegation, July 28, 1945
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Note: On July 26, 1945, Mr. justice Jackson flew to Potsdam, where a conference of heads of state was in session, for consultation with Secretary of State Byrnes concerning the progress and prospects of the London Conference and its relation to questions that had arisen at Potsdam. While he was at Potsdam, the results of the British elections were announced. The Churchill government, in which Sir David Maxwell Fyfe was Attorney-General, was superseded. This foreshadowed changes in the British representation at the London Conference. Upon his return to London on July 28, 1945, Mr. justice Jackson resumed informal conferences with Sir Thomas Barnes, Treasury-Solicitor, whose position would not be affected by the change of government. Sir Thomas delivered the following revised definition of "crimes", prepared by him, with the explanation that he had obtained French acceptance of it but that the Soviet Delegation had rejected it. The definition was as follows:

26th July, 1945.

4 p. m.

For the purpose of the trials before the Tribunal established by the Agreement referred to in Article 1 hereof, the following acts or designs or attempts at any of them shall be deemed to be crimes coming within the jurisdiction of the Tribunal:

(a) Violations of the laws, rules and customs of war. Such violations shall include but shall not be limited to murder and ill-treatment of prisoners of war, atrocities against civilian populations of occupied countries and the deportation of such populations to slave labour, wanton destruction of towns and villages, and plunder.

(b) Atrocities against civilian populations other than those referred to in paragraph (a). These include but are not limited to murder and ill-treatment of civilians and deportations of civilians to slave labour and persecution on political, racial or religious grounds committed in pursuance of the common plan or conspiracy referred to in paragraph (d) below.

(c) Initiation of war of aggression against other nations, or initiation of war in violation of treaties, agreements or assurances or otherwise in violation of international law.

(d) Entering into a common plan or conspiracy aimed at domination over other nations, which plan or conspiracy involved or was reasonably likely to involve in its execution all or any of the above crimes.

Any person who is proved to have in any capacity directed or participated in the initiation of war or in the said plan or conspiracy referred to in paragraphs (c) and (d) hereof shall be personally answerable for each and every violation or atrocity referred to in paragraphs (a) or (b) above committed in furtherance of such war as aforesaid, or in pursuance of the said plan or conspiracy.

International Conference on Military Trials : London, 1945
Report of Robert H. Jackson, United States Representative to the International Conference on Military Trials : London, 1945
International organization and conference series; II
European and British Commonwealth 1
Department of State Publication 3080
Washington, DC : Government Printing Office, 1949

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