Black holes in the Internet: Victims Without Recourse to Justice

Session Information


This session organized by ICC and ICC Trust Fund for Victims with experts from Tilburg University and Dublin City University aims to engage the audience to discuss how victims that can not be reached by digital means, can access justice and how atrocity crimes can be prevented.

In the digital era, it is assumed that anyone can be reached. However, in many instances, victims of international crimes can not be reached and they can not reach out to the institutions that provide mechanisms for the protection of victims and prosecution of grave international crimes. Perpetrators of international crime may isolate the victims and prevent persecution. This also prevents victims from receiving assistance. It stops justice and prevention of atrocity crimes.

This session highlights the digital isolation of victims in Libya, Ukraine, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and the Central African Republic. Drawing on the expertise of the Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) and of the International Criminal Court and the ICC Trust Fund for Victims the session will discuss how victims are reached, justice is promoted and the prevention of such crimes is advanced.

Join the session online

Meeting ID: 330 120 6364
Passcode: 0096376764


Pieter de Baan (ICC TFV)


  • Cristina Ribiero (ICC OTP)
  • Franziska Eckelmans (ICC TFV)

Experts Engagement through Interactive Floor Contributions:

  • Sara Creta (Dublin City University) (ONLINE)
  • Klara Smits (Tilburg University)
  • Nataliia Vdovychenko (Tilburg University)
  • Morgane Wirtz (Tilburg University)

Organisational Descriptions

  • Tilburg University: Established in 1927 as Roomsch Katholieke Handelshoogeschool (Roman Catholic Business School), TU has grown into a multi-disciplinary university oriented toward the humanities and social sciences.
  • ICC Trust Fund for Victims: The Trust Fund for Victims (TFV) advocates for and assists the most vulnerable victims of the crimes within the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) jurisdiction by mobilising people, funding opportunities for the benefit of victims, and implementing court-ordered reparations awards.
  • ICC Office of the Prosecutor: The Office of the Prosecutor (OTP) is an independent organ of the Court. It is responsible for examining situations under the jurisdiction of the Court where genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and aggression appear to have been committed and carrying out investigations and prosecutions against the individuals who are allegedly most responsible for those crimes.
  • Dublin City University: DCU has a strategic plan, ‘Leadership through Foresight’ (2005), and collaborated with national and international organisations and universities on technology and research projects. It has a strong record of strategic collaboration, and
    most of its major research projects are built on partnerships with other universities and colleges, and also with major international companies.



Pieter de Baan – Reporting to the Fund’s Board of Directors, Mr De Baan is responsible for the development and implementation of the reparative justice mandate of the Trust Fund for Victims – judicial reparations, and assistance – for the benefit of victim survivors who suffered harm from crimes under the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court. As Executive Director, he promotes the Fund’s institutional and financial development within the Rome Statute system. Before joining the TFV in September 2010, Mr De Baan worked in international management and advisory roles, in both private and not-for-profit sectors.


Sara Creta is a photojournalist and documentary filmmaker. In the last decade, she has bear witness to the world’s most urgent humanitarian and human rights crises. Traveling to the most remote corners, she has captured through her lens not only war and injustice but also humanity, dignity, and resilience. Sara’s recent bodies of work in Libya include ‘Libya, No Escape from Hell’ a 60 minutes-long documentary for ARTE filmed in Libya on the entire detention system and the role of the militias, and ‘The Ship That Stopped 7,000 Migrants and Smuggled 700,000 Cigarettes’ for The New York Times, an investigation on an Italian warship that was deployed to Tripoli to help combat people-smugglers. In 2019, Sara has covered the revolution in Sudan and filmed a 22 minutes-long documentary for ARTE on Women’s stories from the frontline of Sudan’s revolution. In 2018, she has been awarded a Marie Sklodowska Curie fellowship to conduct research at the Institute for Future Media, Democracy and Society at Dublin City University. Her scholarly work focuses on the intersection of technology, transitional justice, human rights law, and fundamental freedoms.

Cristina Ribeiro

Cristina Ribeiro trained at the Faculty of Law in Lisbon. She is currently the Public Prosecutor of the Public Prosecutor’s Office of Portugal, and also Investigations Coordinator at the International Criminal Court.

Klara Smits

Klara Smits works at Tilburg University as a Ph.D. candidate on the topic of human rights violations that occur in the context of forced movement along the Central Mediterranean Route. Smits particularly looks at the aspects of digitalisation in the nexus of environmental, political, and social problems.

Morgane Wirtz

Morgane Wirtz is a PhD student at Tilburg University, a freelance journalist and a researcher for EEPA. She focuses on human right abuses, security in Sahel, migration and human trafficking on the Central Mediterranean Road. Based in Tunisia, she works for Le Point Afrique, Inkyfada and Hans Lucas. She is also a documentary filmmaker.


Nataliia Vdovychenko

Research master student at Tilburg University, in linguistics and communication sciences. She is a trainee in several projects, such as ‘Reading is Believing? Epistemic vigilance and perceived credibility of online information‘ or ‘Collecting the Haptic greetings corpus for the study and automatic recognition of social touch‘. She is passionate about online culture. Her research interests are: politics, propaganda, disinformation, misinformation, art, culture, literary studies, activism, digital media, privacy, feminism, theology, sociology, and folklore.


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