The International Criminal Court, or ICC, is the only permanent international court with jurisdiction to prosecute individuals for the crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and the crime of aggression. In late October, the ICC President presented to the UN General Assembly the Court’s annual report. This year, the institution’s twentieth, is a banner year, with a record five cases on trial.
The ICC is a vital tool in ensuring international justice, noted U.S. Delegate to the United Nations, Andrew Weinstein. “The ICC has significantly advanced justice for victims around the world.”
“The ICC’s activities in situations around the world underscore its important role as a key piece of the global architecture for accountability – and a reminder of the imperative for justice, even when it may take time to achieve.”
Among the most significant cases handled by the ICC this year is the trial of Janjaweed commander [Ali Mohammed Ali Abd-al Rahman] known as Ali Kushayb. It is the first trial of any senior leader for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed against the people in Darfur by the regime of Sudan’s former president Omar al-Bashir. As well, the ICC has worked closely with the government of the Central African Republic, to bring to trial for crimes against humanity and war crimes Alfred Yekatom, Patrice Ngaisonna, and Mahamat Said Abdel Kani. The case represents a strong blow against impunity.
“Individuals subject to warrants of arrest by the ICC must face justice before fair, independent, and credible judicial proceedings.”
At this point we must address “the horrific war in Ukraine, where civilians face brutal attacks on a daily basis carried out by Russia’s forces,” said Delegate Weinstein.
“The United States supports a range of international investigations into atrocities in Ukraine, including those conducted by the ICC, the United Nations, and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. We will continue to stand with Ukraine in the face of Russia’s brutal aggression and in seeking justice and accountability.”
“Justice is not only a moral imperative, but it is essential for the maintenance of international peace and security,” said Delegate Weinstein. “The United States is a strong supporter of meaningful accountability and justice for the victims of atrocities. These are core values, best advanced through a shared commitment, and the ICC is an integral component of that shared commitment to justice.”