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ICC report to UN details busiest year yet, urges Security Council support


The International Criminal Court (ICC) has issued its 2012-13 annual report to the United Nations (UN) General Assembly, published in all six official languages of the UN under the document symbol A/68/314.

The Court’s ninth report details the busiest year to date for the ICC, a permanent judicial institution responsible for prosecuting genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity, joined to date by 122 States. While independent of the United Nations, the ICC notes that the ongoing cooperation of the UN is particularly appreciated. The report commends the operational support provided by the UN as well as the world body’s revised policy which limits contacts of UN officials with persons subject to ICC arrest warrants.

At the same time, the report warns that UN Security Council referrals to the ICC – such as Libya and Darfur – risk becoming ‘futile’ without the necessary support to enforce the Court’s decisions. Arrest warrants issued by the ICC remain outstanding – some since 2005 – for a total of 13 persons suspected of having committed genocide, crimes against humanity or war crimes.

The ICC notes that it is facing an increasing workload, currently investigating more allegations involving more suspects than ever before, with eight situations under investigation and a further eight under preliminary examination. Cases are ongoing at trial as well as at appeal and pre-trial stages, concerning allegations of grave international crimes committed in several countries. Thousands of victims are represented in proceedings before the Court.

The ICC Prosecutor, Gambian lawyer Fatou Bensouda, opened the latest formal investigation in January, concerning allegations of crimes occurring in Mali since January 2012. The Prosecutor has given particular attention to allegations of intentional attacks against buildings dedicated to religion and historic monuments, including those that have received World Heritage status, and has accordingly cooperated with UNESCO and a number of other UN agencies present in Mali.

The report recognises the importance of cooperation with regional organisations, noting the Court’s frequent contacts with African Union and European Union representatives as well as the Court’s continuing relationships with the League of Arab States and the Organization of American States.

The ICC’s calls for strong and consistent international support to carry out its mandate, stressing it is crucial that States “provide timely and full cooperation to the Court in accordance with their legal obligations, and that appropriate action is taken in case of non-cooperation”.

Report of the International Criminal Court
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For further information, please contact Fadi El Abdallah, Spokesperson and Head of Public Affairs Unit, International Criminal Court, by telephone at: +31 (0)70 515-9152 or +31 (0)6 46448938 or by e-mail at: [email protected].

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