Press Release: 5 February 2019

ICC hosts launch of International Gender Champions Network’s new ‘Den Haag Hub’


On 5 February 2019, the International Criminal Court (ICC) hosted an event launching the hub of the International Gender Champions (IGC) initiative in The Hague, The Netherlands, organized by the Embassies of Canada and Switzerland to The Netherlands. During the event, Gender Champions, aspiring Gender Champions, and other advocates of gender equality discussed how to put into action the commitment of decision-makers in The Hague to break down gender barriers.

Led by H.E. Sabine Nӧlke, Ambassador of Canada to the Netherlands, and H.E. Heinz Walker-Nederkoorn, Ambassador of Switzerland to The Netherlands, The Hague Hub aims to promote gender equality across organisations of all stripes in the city as well coordinating global efforts with other IGC Chapters in Geneva, New York, Vienna and Nairobi.



ICC officials President Chile Eboe-Osuji, Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda and Registrar Peter Lewis, in their individual capacity as heads of the three organs of the ICC, joined the IGC leadership network last year vowing to strengthen gender equality at the Court by taking concrete measures jointly and individually within their respective spheres of responsibility.

The event opened with remarks by ICC President Eboe-Osuji, ICC Registrar Lewis, and H.E. Sabine Nӧlke, Ambassador of Canada to The Netherlands. It featured  a panel discussion with ICC Prosecutor Bensouda, H.E. Sheikh Mohammed Belal, Ambassador of Bangladesh to The Netherlands, Caitlin Kraft-Buchman, Executive Director of Women@TheTable and co-founder of International Gender Champions, as well as Hans de Boer, Chairman of the Confederation of Netherlands Industry and Employers (VNO-NCW). The panel was moderated by H.E. Heinz Walker-Nederkoorn, Ambassador of Switzerland to The Netherlands.

"We can - and must - make it our culture to include women into public offices in equal numbers as men," stated ICC President Judge Chile Eboe-Osuji. 

"Equality for women is progress for all. Achieving gender parity is a collective responsibility," said ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda at the event. "I'm delighted to join the President, the Registrar, and other colleagues in The Hague chapter of the International Gender Champion leadership network to contribute – with concrete initiatives – to our shared goals of breaking gender barriers," she added.

For ICC Registrar Peter Lewis, "the International Gender Champions initiative is very much welcome, as it makes gender equality at workplace a matter of concrete and purposeful steps." 

Background: The International Gender Champions leadership network brings together female and male decision-makers determined to break down gender barriers and achieve gender parity. The network was launched in July 2015 at the Palais des Nations in Geneva and hubs have been established in New York, Vienna, and Nairobi. It counts over 200 active Champions and Alumni worldwide, including the UN Secretary-General, heads of UN offices and organizations, ministers, ambassadors and permanent representatives, and civil society members, academic and business leaders. For more information, please visit the IGC website:  and the new IGC - Den Haag webpage at:

For further information, please contact Sonia Robla, Chief, Public Information and Outreach Section, International Criminal Court, by telephone at: +31 (0) 70 515-8089or 31 (0) 6 46448726 or by e-mail at: [email protected]

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