Press Release: 17 July 2020

ICC marks Day of International Criminal Justice, launching #resilience campaign


The International Criminal Court ("ICC" or "the Court") today marks 17 July, the Day of International Criminal Justice. Commemorations this year focus on the theme of resilience in crisis and conflict. Amidst the global pandemic, gross violations of human rights continue to unfold across the world; there is an outcry for justice. In opening a dialogue on resilience, the Court invites those seeking to build a more just world to engage with the ICC and each other, sharing messages and stories of strength, hope and human dignity.

ICC President Judge Chile Eboe-Osuji stated: "More than ever before, the special challenges experienced this year, from both man-made sources and from a global pandemic, inspire us to redouble our resolve to discharge our mandate of humanity, which is solely in the cause of justice and the rule of law. As a Court, we were created to insist on accountability when some of the world's most atrocious crimes - genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and aggression - have been committed. Victims around the world have placed their hope in the ICC. We will stay the course - undeterred."

Despite the challenges of these unique times, ICC's country offices around the world have continued their work, maintaining a vital presence in communities affected by crimes. Staff of ICC's country offices honoured 17 July through activities, and events reaching these communities, whether by radio, webinars or where possible, in person: ICC's Central African Republic office launched the "Great Debate on Justice" radio series, with a broadcast audience of millions in the communities affected by crimes. In Côte d'Ivoire, together with victims' associations, ICC Country office staff held a special joint event to mark the day underscoring the core importance of victims within the Rome Statute system. In the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Court staff participated in interactive radio broadcasts, on national and regional stations (specifically in Ituri) from 13 to 17 July, to answer listeners' questions on the ICC and its work in the country. In Gulu, Uganda, ICC Outreach officers, together with local NGOs, held a radio panel discussion taking calls from the public and communities affected by crimes. Outreach officers in the Republic of Georgia actively engaged with communities in the settlements for those displaced by the 2008 conflict; notably going back to the men, women and children featured in the ICC's Life After Conflict story series to share photographs and show how their stories had been told. Further, the office in Georgia was invited to participate in a webinar dedicated to the Day of International Criminal Justice, hosted by the Levan Aleksidze Foundation.

This and more will be featured through the Court's #resilience campaign throughout the coming year. Starting this 17 July, the ICC will share stories and messages through its #resilience campaign page and on social media.

Highlights include videos from the Court's leadership, inspiring quotes, visuals and graphics, and a year-long story series "Life after conflict: Stories as told to ICC Outreach by survivors of the world's worst crimes". In gathering and sharing these survivor stories, accompanied by powerful photographs by National Geographic photographers Rena Effendi and Pete Muller. This campaign aims to bring people into focus; to tear down isolation and stigmas, and shine a light on strength, healing and empowerment. Here, people can tell their stories in their own voices. It is stories such as these which continue to galvanise the international community's resolve to promote access to justice and help prevent atrocity crimes. Those wishing to share their stories or messages of resilience can use the #resilience hashtag on social media or email content to [email protected].

Background: 17 July unites all those who support ending impunity for the most serious crimes of international concern through the due process of law, promoting victims' rights, and contributing to the prevention of such crimes. Adopted on 17 July 1998, the Rome Statute is the ICC's founding treaty, ratified by over 120 countries. The ICC is the first permanent international criminal court established to help end impunity for the perpetrators of the most serious crimes of concern to the international community, namely war crimes, crimes against humanity, genocide and the crime of aggression. The Rome Statute also established the Trust Fund for Victims with a two-fold mandate: (i) to implement Court-ordered reparations and (ii) to provide physical and psychological rehabilitation and material support to victim survivors, their families, and affected communities. The TFV assists survivors to begin the process of healing and rebuilding their lives, for them to be able to promote peace and reconciliation.

Related Webpages:

#Resilience campaign page

"Life after conflict" page

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]

You can also follow the Court's activities on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, YouTube, Instagram and Flickr