Governments and practitioners have a suite of legal tools at their disposal with which to hold state actors, state proxies, non-state actors, and affiliated entities to account for human rights violations, atrocity crimes, financial abuses, and acts of terrorism, among other offenses. However, despite their potential potency, these tools are often under-utilized.

The Atlantic Council’s Strategic Litigation Project injects fresh thinking into how governments and practitioners can apply legal tools to advance human rights and accountability around the world.

In-Depth Research & Reports

Timely Commentary & Analysis

Latest Updates

Press Release

Mar 18, 2024

Human rights coalition unveils digital catalog of evidence pointing towards crimes against humanity committed against Iranian protesters

The Archive preserved +1M forensic digital artifacts to support future investigations and trials.

Our Experts


Subscribe to our newsletter for quarterly updates on the SLP’s work on prevention and accountability efforts for atrocity crimes, human rights violations, and terrorism and corruption offenses around the world:

Featured Events & Recaps

Event Recap

Mar 19, 2024

Justice and accountability in the MENA region: The importance of women’s stories

By Charles Johnson

On Wednesday, February 14, the Atlantic Council’s Strategic Litigation Project hosted a hybrid panel event about the crucial role women and their testimonies play in pursuit of justice and accountability in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA).

Human Rights Lebanon

New Atlanticist

Sep 25, 2023

China’s ‘crimes against humanity’ targeting Uyghurs aren’t going away. Here’s what the international community can do.

By Atlantic Council

Don’t be fooled by China’s efforts to cover up its oppression of the Uyghur people and other Turkic minorities, human-rights experts warned.

China European Union

Event Recap

Mar 17, 2023

Prioritizing response and recovery for US persons wrongfully detained abroad

By Britt Gronemeyer and Alana Mitias

On February 15, the Atlantic Council’s Strategic Litigation Project held a discussion about the United States’ approach to cases of wrongful detentions abroad, how strategies can be improved, and ways to better support the families of those detained.

Eastern Europe Indo-Pacific



Strategic Litigation

Mar 29, 2024

Strategic Litigation Quarterly Newsletter: It’s time for a Syria Victims Fund.

The latest updates on the Strategic Litigation Project's work advancing human rights and accountability.

Afghanistan Civil Society


Dec 22, 2023

How to hold the Islamic Republic of Iran accountable in European courts

By Gissou Nia, Celeste Kmiotek, Lisandra Novo, Alyssa T. Yamamoto

While there are no viable domestic routes toward accountability within Iran, national judicial systems in other states present an alternative path to justice. This report examines prospects for initiating prosecutions against IRI perpetrators in European jurisdictions.

Human Rights International Norms

Strategic Litigation

Dec 15, 2023

Strategic Litigation Quarterly Newsletter: Pursuing gender justice through international law

The SLP team has continued and built upon efforts to codify the crime of gender apartheid in international law, including by advocating for its inclusion in the UN Sixth Committee’s draft crimes against humanity treaty.

Afghanistan China


Oct 5, 2023

International avenues to hold the Islamic Republic of Iran accountable for human rights violations

By Lisandra Novo, Celeste Kmiotek, Elise Baker, Gissou Nia

The Islamic Republic of Iran’s discriminatory domestic legal framework and brutal suppression of dissent have left Iranians looking for international responses to their plight. This report aims to provide an overview of and recommendations relating to international avenues for accountability for atrocity crimes and human-rights violations committed in Iran.

Human Rights International Norms

Strategic Litigation

Oct 2, 2023

Strategic Litigation Quarterly Newsletter: Exploring new and existing paths toward accountability

By the Strategic Litigation Project

SLP has continued to work on an archive documenting open-source evidence of human rights violations in Iran and on engaging with UN member states ahead of the body's review of China.

China Human Rights

New Atlanticist

Jul 29, 2021

The US needs better tools to fight transnational repression. Here’s where to start.

By Gissou Nia

As autocrats reach beyond their borders to punish their opponents, the United States must meet the challenge by preparing effective, forward-thinking policy.

Human Rights International Organizations


Jul 13, 2021

The Special Tribunal for Lebanon: What does its closure mean for Lebanon?

By Nicholas Blanford, David Daoud, Gissou Nia, Reem Salahi

The Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) is set to cease operations at the end of July due to lack of funds as Beirut sinks deeper into economic and political crisis. Atlantic Council experts react to what the closure means for Lebanon.

Lebanon Middle East

In the News

Jul 8, 2021

Nia in Just Security: “Will Iran’s New President be Held Accountable?”

By Atlantic Council

Corruption Elections

In the News

May 5, 2021

Nia quoted in the Star Observer on 20 year-old gay man killed in Iran

By Atlantic Council

Civil Society Human Rights

In the News

Apr 7, 2021

Nia quoted in Al Jazeera on whether Clubhouse promotes democracy in Iran

Iran Media