Thursday, March 13, 2003

ICC, a grand ambition
International criminal court

International criminal court (ICC) is able to investigate and prosecute those individuals accused of crimes against humanity, genocide, and crimes of war.
This court will be more efficient, and focused on the leaders responsible for atrocities, rather than on the small fry. The court itself can do little to make them happen without the active support of national governments, who will have to provide it with evidence, enforce its rulings and, most critically of all, deliver suspects to its courtroom.
In addition to The United States, the world’s most brutal dictatorships have opposed to the court. Indeed, two other democracies, India and Israel, have also shared America’s suspicions. China and Japan have spoken in support of the court, but not yet signed the treaty. Russia has signed, but not yet ratified it.
Dozens of countries have said they will do these things, but that promise was easy to make when the court was just a theoretical possibility. The day is fast approaching when the court’s backers will have to prove that their support is real, and not just a pious pledge!!.
The problem in ICC is that the countries setting up the court have not yet been able to agree on a chief prosecutor. Whoever wins the job will require diplomatic as well as legal and managerial skills. The court’s cases will be, almost by definition, complicated and politically sensitive. Some 200 suggestions for prosecutions have already been sent to the court. Early candidates are thought to be rebel commanders in Congo and Côte d'Ivoire. Read more...

The Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies in US has released an article regarding the ICC. Lee A Casey in this 40-page articletried to give reasons why the US has not accepted the ICC’s authority. In introduction, he says,

“One of the most common arguments advanced to support American participation in the new International Criminal Court (“ICC”) is that most of the world’s democracies have already accepted the court’s authority. Of the 87 states parties to the Rome Statute, a clear majority (45) have been implicated in the very worst human rights abuses involving the legal system, including extra-judicial killings, torture, and/or police misconduct resulting in death or severe bodily injury. A full third (29) have been implicated in extra-judicial killings and/or torture. This includes states such as Nigeria, Cambodia, Congo, Paraguay, Sierra Leon, Tajikistan, and Uganda. All institutions, of course, reflect their constituent parts at one level or another, and the Rome Statute guarantees that each member state will have an equal voice in how the court is run. In particular, each state party has a single vote in the Assembly of States Parties, which will select the ICC’s prosecutor and judges. The legal culture of prosecutors and judges from states where human rights remains a slogan, and the judicial system is a tool of repression rather than a bulwark of democracy, suggests that the ICC may not actually prove to be the “most important new institution for enforcing human rights in fifty years.” Only time will tell. Leopards, however, do not change their spots. If the court proves to be representative of its members, then those who genuinely care about law and human rights may find themselves bitterly regretting their support for an institution where the sinners already outnumber the saints.”

There are two challenging points in this article; first, the author rejects the international court because some countries with worst human rights abuses may involve in this system. According to this reasoning establishing any international organization is not possible. Second, when we think that having an equal voice in the court threatens the democracy, how can we accept “Democracy” as the best political system to run a country? Or democracy is a good thing but only for some societies?! What happen if other countries have the same reasons to reject UN resolutions?

(posted by Iman) via pejmanpundit

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