Press Release: 2 June 2017

ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda visits Nigeria: “during war and conflict, the law must not remain silent”


On Friday, 26 May 2017, the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court ("ICC" or "the Court"), Mrs Fatou Bensouda concluded a two-day visit to Abuja, Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Prosecutor Bensouda met with the Acting President of Nigeria, H.E. Mr Yemi Osinbajo, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, H.E. Mr Geoffrey Onyeama, the Minister of Defence, H.E. Brigadier General Mr Mansur Dan Ali,  high ranking military  officials, the Solicitor General, H.E. Mr Taiwo Abidogun, among other relevant authorities. The topics discussed included State cooperation and the status of the ongoing preliminary examination of the situation in Nigeria by the Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC.

Acting President, H.E. Mr Osinbajo and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, H.E. Mr Onyeama reaffirmed Nigeria's firm commitment to the ICC and the fight against impunity for Rome Statute crimes. The Acting President welcomed the Prosecutor's visit and underscored the need to increase awareness in Nigeria about the mandate and activities of the Court.

Prosecutor Bensouda thanked Acting President Osinbajo for Nigeria's strong diplomatic support as well as cooperation with respect to the ongoing preliminary examination conducted by the Office.  The Prosecutor emphasized the importance of ensuring accountability for Rome Statute crimes, adding: "during war and conflict, the law must not remain silent. Justice must be done and seen to be done to ensure accountability and to prevent future crimes."

During her visit, Prosecutor Bensouda also held productive meetings with civil society organisations and engaged with victims of alleged Rome Statute crimes committed in Nigeria.

The Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC conducts independent and impartial preliminary examinations, investigations and prosecution of the crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. The Office has been conducting investigations in: Uganda; the Democratic Republic of the Congo; Darfur, Sudan; the Central African Republic (two separate investigations); Kenya; Libya; Côte d'Ivoire, Mali and Georgia. The Office is also conducting preliminary examinations relating to the situations in Afghanistan, Colombia, Guinea, Iraq/UK, Palestine, Nigeria, Ukraine, Burundi, Gabon and the registered vessels of Comoros, Greece and Cambodia.

Source: Office of the Prosecutor | Contact: [email protected]