The 13th session of the Assembly of States Parties (ASP) to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) opened today at the United Nations in New York. The Assembly will run until 17 December.
We bring you a summary of today’s ASP plenary and elections, as well as news coverage, documents and websites.
Advocacy papers produced by Coalition teams, as well as individual members’ recommendations to the ASP are available on the our website. Official ASP documents and journals can be found on theICC-ASP website.
The Assembly’s thirteenth session opened with an statement by outgoing ASP President Ambassador Tiina Intelmann, who outlined the day’s agenda, followed by a moment for silent prayer or meditation.
The ASP president proceeded to invite, following the Rules of Procedure of the ASP, states who are not parties to the Rome Statute to participate. Palestine was invited to do so as a state. It had previously been recognized as an “entity.”
Senegalese Justice Minister Sidiki Kaba, a long-time supporter of the fight against impunity, was then elected by acclamation as the new president of the Assembly. President Kaba immediately took on the duties of the president for the session. In his inaugural speech, he set out the priorities for his three year mandate: 1) Reconciling the ICC with all regions in the world, including Africa; 2) Cooperation of states with the ICC; 3) Strengthening complementarity; and 4) Promoting the universality of the Rome Statute.
The floor was then given to Interim President of the Central African Republic Catherine Samba-Panza, followed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Senegal Mankeur Ndiaye and the UN Legal Council for the UN Secretary General Miguel de Serpa Soares.
Several new members of the ASP’s Bureau were then elected, along with ASP vice-president Ambassador Alvares Moerzinger.
Kenya took the floor in relation to its request for a special discussion around its concerns related to the ICC investigation into the country’s 2007-08 post-election violence, expressing its confidence that the Assembly would consider the matter in the following days.
The plenary continued with the appointment of the Credentials Committee, the organization of the Assembly’s work and discussions on states in arrears.
A report on the activities of the Court in 2014 was given by ICC President Sang-Hyun Song who reflected on the judicial activities, discussing the ongoing efforts as part of the judicial lessons learned process.
In his address, Chair of the Board of Directors of the Trust Fund for Victims (TVF) Motoo Noguchi gave an update on the Trust Fund’s work and in particular addressed the new strategic plan for the TFV for 2014-2017.
The report of the Oversight Committee on the permanent premises was presented by Roberto Belleli, chair of the committee.
Six members of the Committee on Budget and Finance were also election, and a meeting of the Credentials Committee was held.
The ASP then proceeded to the election of new ICC judges. Six judges will be elected at this ASP to take office in March 2015. At the first round of voting, 73 states cast their votes on Chang-ho Chung of Korea. This makes him the first nominee to receive the highest number of votes and a two-thirds majority. Five seats now remain to be filled. Voting will resume tomorrow morning at 10.00.
Tomorrow at the ASP
Tomorrow at the ASP, the Assembly will continue with the election of the remaining five judicial vacancies. Justice Rapid Response will host a side event on strengthening the international community’s capacity for core international crimes.
Human Rights Watch called on states to pledge more help for investigations, witness protection and arrests.
The International Federation for Human Rights issued recommendations to ASP 13.
Women’s Initiatives for Gender Justice’s Brigid Inder spoke at the launch of the ICC prosecutor’s Policy on Sexual and Gender-based Crimes.
Amnesty International issued recommendations to ASP 13.
Palestine participated at the Assembly as an observer state for the first time.
Georgia ratified the Kampala amendments to the Rome Statute.
- CICC Campaign on ICC Elections
- Website of the Independent Panel on ICC Judicial Elections
- ASP-ICC Website, 13th session of the Assembly of States Parties
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