Prosecuting Starvation Crimes in Yemen's Civil War

Date of Event



The Yemen Accountability Project's release of its white paper "Prosecuting Starvation Crimes in Yemen's Civil War" examines the use of deliberate attacks on food, water, and objects indispensable to survival as part of the Saudi-led Coalition's attacks on Houthi rebels in Yemen. The white paper outlines the evidence of these crimes and makes the case for bringing charges against perpetrators of starvation crimes in Yemen. The panelists will explore the challenges of bringing charges against perpetrators and the potential avenues of accountability.

CLE Reading Materials

Speaker Biographies

Alex de Waal is executive director of the World Peace Foundation and a research professor at The Fletcher School at Tufts University. Considered one of the foremost experts on Sudan and the Horn of Africa, his scholarship and practice has also probed humanitarian crisis and response, human rights, HIV/AIDS and governance in Africa, and conflict and peacebuilding. His recent book, Mass Starvation: The History and Future of Famine, examines recent hunger crises and their causes, arguing for more focused policies against faminocide.

Laura Graham is executive director of the Yemen Accountability Project (YAP) and principal author of YAP's white paper "Prosecuting Starvation Crimes in Yemen's Civil War." Graham's recent work on atrocity crimes explores the relationship between the Security Council and the ICC, as well as the prospects of bringing accountability to perpetrators of atrocity crimes in Yemen. She is a third year law student at Case Western Reserve University School of Law and holds a PhD in Sociology. Her expertise is in ethnic conflicts, genocide, and mass atrocities. 

Milena Sterio is Professor of Law and Associate Dean for Faculty Enrichment at Cleveland State University's Marshall College of Law. She is author of The Right to Self-Determination under International Law, and co-editor of Prosecuting Maritime Piracy: Domestic Solutions to International Crime. Professor Sterio has established herself as one of the most prominent and influential experts in the field of maritime piracy. She has participated in the work of the United Nations' Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia, and is a member of the Piracy Working Group, an academic think tank created within the auspices of the Public International Law and Policy Group. Her academic work has been cited in two piracy prosecutions in the United States' federal courts.

James C. Johnson is the Chief Prosecutor of the Residual Special Court for Sierra Leone, appointed by the Secretary-General of the United Nations in September, 2019.  He is an Adjunct Professor of Law, Director of the Henry T. King Jr. War Crimes Research Office and Faculty Advisor for the Yemen Accountability Project at Case Western Reserve University School of Law in Cleveland, Ohio, a Senior Peace Fellow at Public International Law & Policy Group, and President of Global Accountability Network.  From 2003 until 2012, Mr. Johnson served as Senior Trial Attorney and then Chief of Prosecutions for the Special Court for Sierra Leone. As such, Mr. Johnson supervised trial and investigative teams, which prosecuted ten accused, including the former President of Liberia, Charles Taylor, for war crimes, crimes against humanity and other serious violations of international law.

Subject Headings

starvation crimes--Yemen; crimes against humanity--Yemen; war crimes--Yemen; international criminal law--Yemen


CWRU Law Virtual Event

Document Type