Antonio joined Oxford University in 2017 as Departmental Lecturer in Law, with responsibilities for teaching Public International Law and International Law and Armed Conflict. He also conducts tutorials in Criminal Law. He holds a PhD in Law from the University of Geneva, where he authored a dissertation on "The Defence of Mistake of Law in International Criminal Law".

Since September 2015, Antonio has also been a member of the Journal of International Criminal Justice’s Editorial Committee. The Journal, published by Oxford University Press, is one of the top law reviews in the field of international law.

From September 2012 until September 2017, Antonio has worked as a Teaching Assistant at the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights, tutoring and lecturing on a variety of subjects related to International Law. From February 2016 to January 2017, he was a Visiting Researcher at Harvard Law School, thanks to the “Doc.Mobility” fellowship provided by the Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF). Previously, he worked as a legal assistant to the Special Rapporteur on Protection of Persons in the event of Disasters at the UN International Law Commission (2012), and at the Chambers of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon (2010). Antonio is admitted to practice law in Italy, where he has worked as a defence counsel. 

Antonio holds an LL.M. in International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights (summa cum laude) from the Geneva Academy (2012) and a Master’s degree in Law (Laurea Magistrale in Giurisprudenza, summa cum laude) from the University of Catania (2010).


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  • A Coco, 'Individual criminal responsibility' in D. Djukic and N. Pons (eds), Companion to International Humanitarian Law (Brill/Martinus Nijhoff 2018) (forthcoming)
  • A Coco, 'Instigation to commit international crimes' in J. De Hemptinne and others (eds), Study on the Principles Governing Modes of International Criminal Responsibility (Cambridge University Press 2018) (forthcoming)
  • A Coco, 'Terrorism in International Humanitarian Law' in D. Djukic and N. Pons (eds), Companion to International Humanitarian Law (Brill/Martinus Nijhoff 2018) (forthcoming)
  • A Coco, 'The Universal Duty to Establish Jurisdiction over, and Investigate, Crimes Against Humanity: Preliminary Remarks on Draft Articles 7, 8, 9 and 11 by the International Law Commission ' (2018) 16 Journal of International Criminal Justice 751
    The International Law Commission’s (ILC) draft articles on crimes against humanity contain some key provisions on the duty to establish national jurisdiction over crimes against humanity, under draft Article 7, and on the duty to investigate the possible occurrence of crimes against humanity, pursuant to draft Articles 8 and 9. This article analyses, first, the duty to establish national jurisdiction over crimes against humanity, focusing in particular on the identification of what constitutes ‘territory under a state’s jurisdiction’ and on the principle of universal jurisdiction. Secondly, it delves into the general duty to investigate situations in which crimes against humanity may have been committed, clarifying the circumstances in which such duty would arise and the requirements that related investigations should satisfy. Thirdly, this article deals with the specific duty to carry out a preliminary inquiry into allegations against suspects who are found on the state’s territory — exploring, in particular, the extent to which the pertinent information should be shared with other states and the fair treatment guarantees that draft Article 11 accords to alleged offenders. In suggesting some improvements, this article considers that these draft articles — though representing a welcome development — constitute no more than the bare minimum to be carried out at the international level to prevent and punish crimes against humanity effectively.
  • A Coco, 'Article 13' in M. Klamberg (ed), Commentary on the Law of the International Criminal Court (TOAEP 2017)
    Article 13 comprises an exhaustive list of three procedural devices – State Party referral, UN Security Council referral, Prosecutor’s proprio motu investigations – which can be used to activate (or ‘trigger’) the ICC jurisdiction. Absent from the statutes of international criminal tribunals created ad hoc, such provision assumes foundational value in the International Criminal Court’s architecture because of its prospective, permanent and potentially universal mandate. The present contribution sheds light into the meaning of Article 13, analyzing its history and context.
  • A Coco and M. Cross, 'Foreword' (2017) Journal of International Criminal Justice 407
    DOI: 10.1093/jicj/mqx034
  • A Coco and J.B. Maillart, 'The Conflict with Islamic State: A Critical Review of International Legal Issues' in A. Bellal (ed), The War Report: Armed Conflict in 2014 (Oxford University Press 2015)
    Islamic State (IS) is a radical jihadist armed group that controls vast swathes of territory in eastern Syria and across northern and western Iraq. Its existence and activities have prompted numerous States to intervene against it. Rather than focusing on the responsibility of Islamic State itself, the present contribution assesses the legality of the behavior of the States who interact with the armed group. In particular, the authors assess the legality of the use of force against Islamic State, exploring the current international regulation of self-defense and military interventions by invitation of the territorial State. The chapter also analyses whether any State bears responsibility for (or in relation to) the violations of international law performed by Islamic State.
  • A Coco and T. Gal, 'Losing Direction: The ICTY Appeals Chamber’s Controversial Approach to Aiding and Abetting in Perišić' (2014) Journal of International Criminal Justice 345
    DOI: 10.1093/jicj/mqu010
    On 28 February 2013, the ICTY Appeals Chamber acquitted Momčilo Perišić, former Chief of Staff of the Yugoslav Army. He had been convicted at trial for having aided and abetted — through the provision of weapons and personnel — the crimes committed by the Army of the Republika Srpska in Sarajevo and Srebrenica. The Appeals Chamber found that, when the accused is remote from the crime, the prosecution must show that he/she specifically directed his/her assistance towards the perpetration of specific crimes and not only generally towards the realization of activities which could be either lawful or unlawful. On 23 January 2014, a different bench of the ICTY Appeals Chamber, in Šainović et al., rejected this theory and affirmed that specific direction is not an element of aiding and abetting in customary international law. This article explores the origins of ‘specific direction’ and concludes that although it comes up in some ICTY judgments, it has never been applied in the sense propounded by the Perišić appeal judgment. Given that the issue remains a source of debate in the jurisprudence, the authors consider the merits of both positions and question whether the temporal or geographical location of the alleged aider and abettor should change the legal elements of the mode of liability. They examine the implications of requiring that the provision of assistance must be directed towards unequivocally unlawful activities and conclude that requiring specific direction blurs the lines between aiding and abetting — an accessorial mode of liability — and forms of principal perpetration.
  • A Coco, 'I divieti di trasferimento ai sensi degli articoli 6 e 7 del Trattato sul commercio delle armi (The Prohibition of Weapons Transfers based on Articles 6 and 7 of the Arms Trade Treaty)' (2013) Rivista di Diritto Internazionale 1221
  • A Coco, 'The Mark of Cain: The Crime of Terrorism in Times of Armed Conflict as Interpreted by the Court of Appeal of England and Wales in R v. Mohammed Gul' (2012) Journal of International Criminal Justice 425
    DOI: 10.1093/jicj/mqt001
    On 22 February 2012, the Court of Appeal of England and Wales was called on to interpret the definition of the crime of terrorism as contained in relevant United Kingdom (UK) legislation. When confronted with defence arguments grounded in international law, the Court denied that attacks by non-state armed groups against governmental armed forces in a non-international armed conflict may be exempted from being labelled as terrorist acts. The present article contests this assumption. The Court of Appeal could have interpreted UK legislation in light of the current international legal framework on the definition of the crime of terrorism in times of armed conflict. In particular, some international conventions on terrorism binding on the UK establish that all attacks committed in the context of an armed conflict, including non-international armed conflicts, continue to be governed by international humanitarian law (IHL). IHL provides a definition of the crime of terrorism in times of armed conflict and the Court should have interpreted the UK domestic legislation consistently with this definition. Such an approach is also supported by the idea that non-state actors should be encouraged to apply rules of IHL. Marking them as terrorists, even when they abide by the laws of war, constitutes instead a disincentive to comply with such laws.
  • A Coco and A. De Luca, 'Il diritto d'asilo in Italia - Aspetti problematici (Asylum Right in Italy - Problematic issues)' in V. Di Cataldo and V. Patanè (eds), (Giappichelli 2011)
  • A Coco, A. De Luca, B. Mascolino and E. Puleio, 'Le lacune del Diritto Internazionale Umanitario (The gaps of International Humanitarian Law)' in V. Di Cataldo and V. Patanè (eds), Temi di ricerca per la tutela dei Diritti Umani (Giappichelli 2011)

Research Interests

International Criminal Law – Criminal Law - International Humanitarian Law – Law on the Use of Force – International Human Rights Law – Anti-Terrorism Law – International Criminal Procedure

Options taught

Public International Law, International Law and Armed Conflict

Research projects