The Nuremberg Trials were the military tribunals following World War II, held by the Allied forces to prosecute the Nazi officials most responsible for the Holocaust and other war-time atrocities. The initial trials took place between November 20, 1945, and October 1, 1946, in Nuremberg, Germany. The court tried political, military, and economic leaders of Nazi Germany. Judges and chief prosecutors represented four countries, all victors of the war: the Soviet Union, Great Britain, the United States, and France.
Indictments were brought against 24 major war criminals and seven criminal organizations. These indictments included charges for participation in a conspiracy for crimes against peace, planning and waging wars of aggression, war crimes, and crimes against humanity. Of the 24 accused, 12 received the death penalty (2 of which committed suicide), 4 served 10-20 years in prison, 3 received lifetime imprisonment, and 3 were acquitted.
The trials ultimately yielded the Nuremberg Principles which defined war crimes. The trials also set precedent for the Genocide Convention, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Convention on the Abolition of the Statute of Limitations on War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity, and the Geneva Convention.
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