Press Release: 17 July 2023

The ICC marks Rome Statute's 25th anniversary

25RS logo

Today, 17 July 2023, marks the 25th anniversary of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC). The Assembly of States Parties (ASP), ICC, and Trust Fund for Victims (TFV) together commemorate this milestone. 

H.E. Silvia Fernández de Gurmendi, President of the Assembly of States Parties, remarked on this occasion: "Today the world needs more justice than ever. The atrocities of the twentieth century that led to the creation of the Court have not ceased and there is a growing erosion of multilateralism and the rule of law." She continued: "In July 1998, the Court was an idea yet to be realized. Twenty-five years after its creation, the hope is that more states will join this historical effort to maximize its potential to impart justice in our tumultuous world."

ICC President Judge Piotr Hofmański, stated: "I pay tribute to all the diplomats, members of civil society and others who made the adoption of the Rome Statute possible 25 years ago. It was a historic moment in the international community’s joint quest to end impunity for the crime of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and the crime of aggression. We who work at the International Criminal Court are privileged to serve that cause by advancing the Court’s independent and impartial mandate through concrete action. To do so effectively, we need the fullest cooperation of States, particularly taking into account the Court’s heavy workload, concerning conflicts and alleged crimes on four continents.”
ICC Prosecutor Karim Khan KC remarked: “As we mark the 25th anniversary of the Rome Statute, it is a moment to reflect on what has been achieved but, perhaps more importantly, what more we can do together. This milestone should be used to accelerate our action in transforming the long-awaited promise of justice into a reality for those communities we serve. Our willingness to evolve, our focus on improving our work, and our determination to deliver results, will be central to deepening the impact of international criminal justice in the next quarter-century.”
ICC Registrar Mr Osvaldo Zavala Giler commented: “The 25th anniversary of the Rome Statute is a moment to recognise how far we have collectively come to ensure that the most serious crimes of concern to the international community do not go unpunished. The Court relies on the cooperation and support of its States Parties, international organisations, and civil society to deliver on its mandate and contribute to the enforcement of international justice.”    

Ms Minou Tavárez Mirabal, Chair of the Board of Directors of the Trust Fund for Victims, stated: "The Rome Statute was adopted providing a vision of reparative justice, with participation of victims ensuring that judicial proceedings are delivered as a form of reparations and through a Trust Fund for Victims to provide other reparative measures, such as compensation, rehabilitation, restitution and satisfaction. More than 46 million Euros have been granted to the TFV through voluntary contributions from 52 States Parties and from individuals. The 25th anniversary calls upon the stakeholders to the Rome Statute system to collaborate towards financial, institutional and operational solutions to enhance the impact and reach of the TFV programmes that realize the rights of victims of the crimes under the jurisdiction of the ICC, and of their families, to receive reparation for the harm they have suffered.” 
Together with high-level guests from around the world, these leaders are meeting at the United Nations headquarters in New York for a day-long event commemorating the anniversary and seeking to strengthen support for the Court in the coming decade. 

Background: Adopted on 17 July 1998, the Rome Statute is the ICC's founding treaty, ratified by 123 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 has also established the Trust Fund for Victims to redress the harm suffered by victims of Rome Statute crimes, through reparations awards ordered by the ICC and other programmes for their benefit. The TFV is implementing other programmes for the benefit of victims through the provision of medical treatment, psychological rehabilitation, socio-economic support and education. The TFV assists survivors to begin the process of healing and rebuilding their lives, for them to be able to promote peace and reconciliation. 

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