World Day of International Justice
On July 17th, the international community celebrates the Day of International Criminal Justice. The decision to dedicate this day to international criminal justice was to mark the adoption of the Rome Statute, by which the International Criminal Court (ICC) was founded, and to commemorate and celebrate the steps taken toward ending impunity. On July 17th, the international community celebrates the Day of International Criminal Justice. The decision to dedicate this day to international criminal justice was to mark the adoption of the Rome Statute, by which the International Criminal Court (ICC) was founded, and to commemorate and celebrate the steps taken toward ending impunity.
Acting collectively as an Assembly, the 122 States Parties have consistently voiced a strong commitment to cooperate with the Court and recognized their responsibilities and obligations from arresting individuals to ensuring the protection of witnesses. Acting individually or regionally though, States sometimes find it politically challenging or outright impossible to cooperate and have even collectively undertaken not to comply with the Court.
However, as challenging or impossible as it may seem, the world is expecting international criminal jurisdictions, including the ICC, to focus on the leaders or architects responsible for international crimes, even if these people occupy a high office. “The trials of these leaders, watched by the world, can serve as an important deterrent to future abuses of power, in all countries. Furthermore, the trials of the leaders responsible for heinous crimes that have affected very large numbers of victims also enable more victims to benefit from justice and redress,” stated Ms. Pillay in her address in The Hague.
Today, celebrating the Day of International Criminal Justice is a perfect occasion to not only commemorate the strides that have been made toward ending impunity but to also demonstrate a continued commitment to ensuring accountability for crimes that threaten the peace, security, and well-being of the world. In reaffirming their support to the international justice system, States Parties need to continue day-to-day cooperation with the Court to ensure its success in delivering justice.
I join the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights in her hope that over time we will see a systematic criminalization of war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide across the globe and join her in her call on all States to ratify the Rome Statute and adopt implementing legislation.
Source: Huffington Post – Intelman, T. (n.d) http://www.huffingtonpost.com/tiina-intelmann/international-criminal-justice-day_b_3605577.html
Photos courtesy of: Capital News – http://www.capitalfm.co.ke/news/2016/01/will-withdrawal-rome-statute-halt-rutos-icc-case/ Allevents – https://allevents.in/events/international-justice-day/1552506861723621#United States Holocaust Memorial Museum – https://www.ushmm.org/learn/timeline-of-events/after-1945/rome-statute