Deciana Speckmann | January, 2011 | Volume 2 Number 1
As the “legal capital of the world” and host of the International Criminal Court (ICC), the Dutch government has consistently advocated that crimes under international law should not go unpunished. Hence, it is not surprising that the Netherlands has become a frequent invoker of Article 1F of the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees (Refugees Convention), which denies refugee status to perpetrators of particularly serious international crimes. In an attempt to go beyond excluding such individuals from refugee protection, the Dutch government has made serious efforts towards prosecuting them. By rigorously applying Article 1F and by making criminal prosecution an inherent component of the post-exclusion phase, the Netherlands considers itself a progressive frontrunner in this field. Indeed, as this essay will show, the Dutch approach to exclusion is ahead of its time.