A tribute to Christopher Keith Hall, international justice advocate (1946-2013)

Christopher Keith Hall

Christopher Keith Hall

Christopher Keith Hall, Senior Legal Adviser with the International Justice Project of Amnesty International, died in London on Monday 27 May, 2013.

Christopher was a passionate human rights activist and an ambitious visionary. He was wholeheartedly committed to the cause of international justice, lending his brilliant legal mind to the design of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court and to the advancement of universal jurisdiction.

His rigorous precision and attention to detail, with respect to both legal notions and language, was legendary among his colleagues. He loved to recall the motto his then boss had impressed upon him during his first days in Amnesty International’s legal office: “accuracy, accuracy, accuracy”. Such a high standard is reflected in his written work, not only for Amnesty International but also in countless academic publications.

Despite his enormous contribution to the development of international criminal law and to Amnesty International’s reputation, he was incredibly humble. He probably never realised that the authority with which Amnesty International now speaks on issues of international justice is, in fact, the authority he personally built in years of work.

He was a brilliant mentor, generous with knowledge, time and advice. Over nearly 25 years at Amnesty International he trained, encouraged and supported two generations of human rights activists, who now continue his work not only at Amnesty International but also in other NGOs, international organisations and academia. I have the privilege to be one of them.