Press Release: 19 June 2024

ICC President Akane concludes official visit to Japan

 ICC President Akane concludes official visit to Japan
Photos: Keio University (top left and top right), MoFA Japan (bottom right)

From 9 to 14 June 2024, Judge Tomoko Akane, the President of the International Criminal Court (ICC), conducted an official visit to Japan with the purpose of further strengthening the close relations between Japan and the Court, as well as raising awareness of the Court among Japanese legal professionals.

In Tokyo, President Akane held meetings with Yoko Kamikawa, Minister for Foreign Affairs, and Ryuji Koizumi, Minister of Justice. She expressed gratitude for Japan’s strong commitment to the Court, which both ministers reaffirmed. During the meetings, President Akane underlined the importance of support for international justice from the Asia-Pacific region in order to strengthen the rule of law at the international level. In this context, the need to encourage more countries from the region to join the Rome Statute, the ICC’s founding treaty, was emphasised. The meetings also included discussions on concrete measures towards enhancing the geographical representation of Japanese nationals among ICC staff. While in Tokyo, President Akane also paid a courtesy visit to Chief Justice Saburo Tokura at the Supreme Court of Japan.

The ICC President furthermore met with around 30 members of the National Diet, with whom she had an exchange on the ICC’s high workload and the Court’s need for broad international support and cooperation to effectively carry out its mandate. She also met with representatives of the Japan Federation of Bar Association to discuss the dissemination of information about the Court among Japanese lawyers.

On 12 June, President Akane delivered a lecture at Keio University in Tokyo and signed, on the ICC’s behalf, a Memorandum of Understanding with the University to enhance cooperation and geographical representation and promote the exchange of expertise and experience.

Finally, President Akane paid a visit to Hiroshima, where she held meetings with the Governor of Hiroshima and the Hiroshima Bar Association, and laid flowers at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park.

Background: Japan plays an important role as the ICC’s largest budget contributor, and a contributor to the Court’s Trust Fund for Victims. Japan deposited its instrument of accession to the Rome Statute on 17 July 2007. Out of the 124 States Parties to the Rome Statute, 19 are Asia-Pacific States.  

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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