"In June 2018, the International Criminal Court (ICC) appeals chamber reversed what had been the court’s most significant verdict: a 2016 conviction of a former Congolese vice-president, Jean-Pierre Bemba, for crimes committed in the Central African Republic.1 This was significant because it was the court’s first conviction for crimes of sexual and gender-based violence and on the basis of command responsibility, and because Bemba was among the most senior-ranking officials to appear for trial at the court.

An acquittal needs to be understood as a legitimate outcome to any justice process, but, in context, the decision touched off alarm bells about the health of the institution..."