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UN Excerpts: ICC references, 17 November - 31 December 2007
14 Jan 2008

Dear All:

In addition to excerpts previously distributed from UN meetings, reports and resolutions, including the Security Council open debate on the Protection of Civilians, the presentation of the General Assembly ICC resolution, and the ICC Prosecutor's Darfur presentation to the Security Council, please find below additional references to the ICC and its situations publicly available from 17 November – 31 December 2007.

Highlights include meeting records from the sixth session of the Assembly of States Parties held at UN Headquarters in New York.

1. U.N. Security Council, Secretary-General calls for creation of working group, as Security Council holds day-long debate on protection of civilians in armed conflict: Delegates Stress Importance of Ending Impunity Sexual Violence: Underscore Need to Rethink Use of Private Security Contractors, Cluster Munitions, 20 November 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/sc9174.doc.htm

2. U.N. General Assembly Third Committee, Third Committee approves 11 more drafts for Assembly including one more country-specific text that again draws heavy criticism, 21 November 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/gashc3910.doc.htm

3. U.N. General Assembly, Strengthened General Assembly needed ‘to find global solutions to global problems’ president says, as revitalization of work debated: Assembly Also Declares 20 February World Day for Social Justice; Adopts Resolutions on Diamond Certification Scheme, International Criminal Court, 26 November 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/ga10662.doc.htm

4. U.N. Security Council, Under-Secretary-General Reports progress in Darfur Peacekeeping efforts, but tells Security Council of obstacles to political process: In Joint Briefing with Special Envoy, Sudan, Rebels Share Blame for ‘Serious Gaps’ in Arrangements to Deploy Hybrid Operation, 27 November 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/sc9178.doc.htm

5. U.N. General Assembly Third Committee, Third Committee Recommends Appointment of Special Representative on violence against children, as it approves five draft texts: Others Address: Women’s Anti-Discrimination Convention; Implementing Social Summit; Beijing Declaration; Protecting Human Rights While Fighting Terrorism, 27 November 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/gashc3911.doc.htm

6. U.N. News Service, Ugandan rebel group members agree to disarm and return home – UN mission, 30 November 2007, http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=24863&Cr=uganda&Cr1=lra

7. U.N. News Service, International Criminal Court heading towards universality, says chief judge, 30 November 2007, http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=24874&Cr=icc&Cr1=

8. U.N. Press Release, International Criminal Court: Assembly of States Parties Meetings Coverage, Assembly of States Parties to Rome Statute of International Criminal Court fill two of three judicial vacancies: Collective Responsibility of States, International Organizations, Civil Society to Cooperate with Court Stressed, 30 November 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/L3118.doc.htm

9. U.N. News Service, Ban Ki-moon urges greater cooperation with International Criminal Court, 3 December 2007, http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=24894&Cr=international&Cr1=court

10. Office of the Secretary-General, Cooperation is essential in determining effectiveness of International Criminal Court, Secretary-General tells states parties to the Rome Statute, 3 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/sgsm11310.doc.htm, http://www.un.org/apps/news/infocus/sgspeeches/statments_full.asp?statID=158

11. U.N. Press Release, International Criminal Court: Assembly of States Parties Meetings Coverage, UN Struggle for Peace Cannot Succeed without International Criminal Court’s Efforts for Justice, says Secretary-General to States Parties Assembly: Meeting Also Fills Judicial Vacancy, Electing Daniel David Ntanda Nsereko of Uganda to Four-Year Term as Judge, 3 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/L3119.doc.htm

12. U.N. News Service, Three judges elected to serve on the International Criminal Court, 4 December 2007, http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=24907&Cr=international&Cr1=court

13. U.N. Press Release, Press Conference by Security Council President on December work program, 4 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/briefings/docs//2007/071204_Spatafora.doc.htm

14. U.N. News Service, Sudan to dominate Security Council’s intensive December schedule – President, 4 December 2007, http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=24917&Cr=sudan&Cr1=

15. U.N. Security Council, International Criminal Court Prosecutor tells Security Council Sudan’s Government ‘Not Cooperating’ in Darfur Investigation, Massive Crimes Continue: Two Arrest Warrants Issued on 27 April, No Steps Taken to Apprehend, Surrender; Asks Council for Strong Message Requesting Compliance with Resolution 1593 (2005), 5 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/sc9186.doc.htm

16. U.N. News Service, Sudan has failed to cooperate with the International Criminal Court, Prosecutor says, 5 December 2007, http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=24933&Cr=sudan&Cr1=

17. U.N. News Service, International Criminal Court: Assembly of States Parties Meeting Coverage, Assembly of States Parties to International Criminal Court elect Liechtenstein’s Permanent Representative for seventh through ninth sessions, 13 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/l3121.doc.htm

18. U.N. News Service, International Criminal Court: Assembly of States Parties Meetings Coverage, Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court Adopts Five Draft Resolutions as it Concludes Two-week Session, 14 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/l3122.doc.htm

19. U.N. Security Council, Departing Security Council Members give Briefings on Activities of Subsidiary Bodies over the Past Two Years, 17 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/sc9204.doc.htm

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1. U.N. Security Council, Secretary-General calls for creation of working group, as Security Council holds day-long debate on protection of civilians in armed conflict: Delegates Stress Importance of Ending Impunity Sexual Violence: Underscore Need to Rethink Use of Private Security Contractors, Cluster Munitions, 20 November 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/sc9174.doc.htm

“Consideration should be given to referring grave incidents of rape and other forms of sexual violence to the International Criminal Court, he said, adding that targeted sanctions could also be applied. The Council should seek creative ways to support States in holding perpetrators accountable, for example, through the establishment of social ad hoc judicial arrangements. Other actions proposed in the report concerned more robust legal protection for humanitarian workers, against whom attacks continued to mount. There was also a critical need to address housing, land and property issues much earlier in a conflict to prevent violence arising from disputes over them. [...]

Recommendations to address the issue of sexual violence include: requesting the systematic provision of comprehensive information on sexual violence as a specific annex to all reports to the Council on peacekeeping operations and other relevant missions; and referring situations of grave incidents of sexual violence to the International Criminal Court and/or considering the imposition of targeted sanctions against States or non-State armed groups that perpetrate or support such crimes. [...]

Turning to the issue of access, the Secretary-General recommends, among other things, ensuring that United Nations peacekeeping and other relevant missions are mandated to contribute to the creation of security conditions that enable the provision of humanitarian assistance; having the Emergency Relief Coordinator systematically bring to the Council’s attention situations where serious access concerns exist; and, where appropriate, considering the referral of grave instances of denial of access, as well as situations involving attacks against humanitarian workers, to the International Criminal Court. [...]

He said the report contained a number of recommendations regarding the need for more concerted and innovative action to prevent and respond to sexual violence in armed conflict. Combating sexual violence, and the impunity that made it thrive, required a rethink of how to use the tools at the disposal of the international community and the Council. Those tools included the referral of grave incidents of rape and other forms of sexual violence to the International Criminal Court and targeted sanctions. [...]

A second action concerned access, an essential, if not the most essential, element in efforts to provide assistance and protection, he continued. Of particular concern was the fact that security incidents involving humanitarian staff continued to mount. [...] The Council should also hold situation-specific debates on access and, where appropriate, consider referring grave instances of access denial to the International Criminal Court.”

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2. U.N. General Assembly Third Committee, Third Committee approves 11 more drafts for Assembly including one more country-specific text that again draws heavy criticism, 21 November 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/gashc3910.doc.htm

“The representative of Venezuela, noting that his delegation had joined consensus, drew attention to preambular paragraph 9 and its reference to the Rome Statutes of the International Criminal Court. Only in certain circumstances could the displacement of persons constitute a war crime, he said. More comprehensive and inclusive wording was necessary; it was hoped that a broader vision would be reflected in the text the next time the Committee addressed the issue.”

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3. U.N. General Assembly, Strengthened General Assembly needed ‘to find global solutions to global problems’ President says, as revitalization of work debated: Assembly Also Declares 20 February World Day for Social Justice; Adopts Resolutions on Diamond Certification Scheme, International Criminal Court, 26 November 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/ga10662.doc.htm

“The final text adopted by the Assembly today had the world body welcome the 2006-2007 report of the International Criminal Court (ICC), and welcome the States parties as well as States not parties to the Rome Statute –- the Court’s founding decree -- that had become parties to the Agreement on Privileges and Immunities of the ICC, and call upon all States that had not yet done so to consider becoming parties to that Agreement.

Further by that resolution, the Assembly encouraged States to contribute to the Trust Fund established for the benefit of victims of crimes within the jurisdiction of the Court and the families of such victims, and acknowledged with appreciation contributions made to that Fund thus far. The Assembly held a debate on the Court’s report on 1 November.”

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4. U.N. Security Council, Under-Secretary-General Reports progress in Darfur Peacekeeping efforts, but tells Security Council of obstacles to political process: In Joint Briefing with Special Envoy, Sudan, Rebels Share Blame for ‘Serious Gaps’ in Arrangements to Deploy Hybrid Operation, 27 November 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/sc9178.doc.htm

“JOHN SAWERS (United Kingdom) [...] The humanitarian situation remained critical and was getting worse, he said, calling on the Sudan to lift restrictions on humanitarian access. Peace in Darfur also depended in ending the culture of impunity. Council members looked to the Government to carry out the arrest warrants issued by the International Criminal Court, and it was an insult that one of the people sought had been appointed a Government minister. Urgent action on all four tracks was required, and the Council stood ready to take tough action against any party standing in the way of the peace process. [...]

JEAN-MAURICE RIPERT (France) [...] With regard to humanitarian situation, France was concerned about lack of access and forced displacements. Voluntary returns under international law must be assured. As for impunity for crimes against civilians, France pledged its full commitment to justice in Darfur and the continued involvement of the International Criminal Court. [...]

DUŠAN MATULAY (Slovakia) [...] With the Sudan, the international community should also do more to address the alarming humanitarian situation in the displaced-person camps. Slovakia called on all parties to recommit to the full implementation of the Joint CommuniquĂ© on humanitarian activities, and fully supported the investigation and prosecution of crimes in Darfur under the International Criminal Court.

JOHAN VERBEKE (Belgium) [...] Deploring delays in implementing the heavy support package and deploying UNAMID, he reminded the Sudan of its obligations in that regard. The Council must assume its responsibilities in the face of non-cooperation. The Sudan was also required to cooperate with the International Criminal Court in the face of grave violations of humanitarian law. [...]

ROMY TINCOPA (Peru) [...] Expressing concern over the deteriorating security and humanitarian situation, she said the parties must cease hostilities and ensure absolute and unhindered humanitarian access. The parties and the Government must also cooperate fully with the International Criminal Court. Like others, Peru was concerned about delays in the deployment of UNAMID. It was necessary to comply with the established time frame.”

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5. U.N. General Assembly Third Committee, Third Committee Recommends Appointment of Special Representative on violence against children, as it approves five draft texts: Others Address: Women’s Anti-Discrimination Convention; Implementing Social Summit; Beijing Declaration; Protecting Human Rights While Fighting Terrorism, 27 November 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/gashc3911.doc.htm

“The representative of the Philippines said he had voted in favour of the resolution and would have liked to become a co-sponsor. However, references to the International Criminal Court had prevented it from doing so, since the country had not ratified it.”

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6. U.N. News Service, Ugandan rebel group members agree to disarm and return home – UN mission, 30 November 2007, http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=24863&Cr=uganda&Cr1=lra
“Last month a senior LRA commander, Patrick Opiyo Mayasi, and his wife also gave themselves up, along with their weapons and ammunition, to Congolese border police.
The LRA, which has fought a civil war with the Ugandan Government since the mid-1980s, became notorious during the conflict for abducting as many as 25,000 children and using them as fighters and porters. The children were often subject to extreme violence shortly after abduction, with many girls allocated to officers in a form of institutional rape.
In October 2005 the International Criminal Court (ICC) issued its first-ever arrest warrants against five senior members of the LRA: the leader Joseph Kony, and the commanders Vincent Otti, Okot Odhiambo, Dominic Ongwen and Raska Lukwiya.”

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7. U.N. News Service, International Criminal Court heading towards universality, says chief judge, 30 November 2007, http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=24874&Cr=icc&Cr1=

“Judge Kirsch told the Assembly’s sixth session, held at United Nations Headquarters in New York, that the Court has made ‘significant progress’ as it nears the tenth anniversary of the adoption of the Rome Statute in July 1998, which led to the tribunal’s founding. [...]

‘Most importantly, it is increasingly recognized that the Court is having the impact for which it was created by the States Parties by contributing to the deterrence of crimes and improving chances for sustainable peace.’ [...]

‘Working together, we can ensure that the Court makes lasting and sustainable contributions to justice, peace and accountability around the world.’ [...]

In addition, he called for the world’s countries to demonstrate greater support for the ICC, whether in practical cooperation measures such as the arrest of suspects or by advocating publicly on behalf of the Court.
ICC Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo used his address to detail the work of his office, particularly in the cases it is investigating concerning the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), the Central African Republic (CAR), northern Uganda and the Sudanese region of Darfur.

He urged States Parties to play their part to ensure the arrest of the men who have already been indicted by the Court: Joseph Kony and four other commanders of the rebel Lord’s Resistance Army (LRA) in Uganda, and two figures from the Darfur conflict."

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8. U.N. Press Release, International Criminal Court: Assembly of States Parties Meetings Coverage, Assembly of States Parties to Rome Statute of International Criminal Court fill two of three judicial vacancies: Collective Responsibility of States, International Organizations, Civil Society to Cooperate with Court Stressed, 30 November 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/L3118.doc.htm

"The Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, in a single round of balloting, today, elected two judges, filling two of three judicial vacancies out of a total of 16 seats, as the Assembly opened its sixth session.

Elected under terms and conditions to be determined during the current session were Fumiko Saiga (Japan), a legal expert on international humanitarian, human rights and gender issues, and Bruno Cotte (France), an expert in international criminal law. The third judicial vacancy was not filled as none of the three candidates for the post managed to obtain the required two-thirds majority. [...]

In opening remarks, Assembly President Bruno Stagno Ugarte recalled that the Assembly was the custodian of one of the most incredible creations of humankind, an international criminal court unlike any other in history. Its uniqueness was based on the promise of its universality; its standing as a permanent and independent institution; its complementarity, neutrality and impartiality; and its provisions for the participation and reparation of victims. [...]

Turning to a report on the Court’s activities, Philippe Kirsch, President of the International Criminal Court, spoke of significant progress in 2007 on investigations and proceedings in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, the Darfur region of the Sudan, Uganda and the Central African Republic. [...]

Mr. Kirsch stressed the collective responsibility of States, international organizations and civil society to cooperate with the Court, saying it was important for sustaining credibility and effectiveness, particularly in executing warrants, where a number of requests for cooperation were unfulfilled. [...]

‘Relative silence was observed in situations where public support for the Court and the need for justice would have been expected. That had sent the wrong messages to perpetrators and potential perpetrators of serious international crimes,’ he said. [...]

He said the relationship between the Court and the United Nations had been strengthened after the two bodies concluded the Relationship Agreement. The Court had held regular exchanges with the European Union and would soon conclude a memorandum of understanding with the African Union. Civil society had also played a part in ensuring that the Court received the necessary cooperation from States.

The budget would be presented in more detail by the Court Registrar next week, he said, adding that there was concern about proposed cuts to the legal aid budget since adequate legal assistance was essential to the fairness of trials. Equally worrying were recommendations to cut the budget for interim premises -- the Court had achieved maximum occupancy and additional space was urgently needed. [...]

Court Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo (Argentina) summarized developments and said his office would open new investigations next year in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Darfur. Analyses of crimes on three continents would also be investigated, including a follow-up to his recent visit to Colombia. [...]

The Assembly of States Parties then heard a report on the activities of the Board of Directors by AndrĂ© Laperrière, Director of the Secretariat of the Trust Fund for Victims on behalf of Board Chairperson Simone Veil. An oral report of the Bureau’s activities was presented by Assembly President Ugarte. The Assembly took note of both.”

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9. U.N. News Service, Ban Ki-moon urges greater cooperation with International Criminal Court, 3 December 2007, http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=24894&Cr=international&Cr1=court

“The long-term success of the International Criminal Court (ICC) depends on greater cooperation from the world’s countries, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said today, calling on States to maintain their funding and public advocacy for the tribunal.
Mr. Ban told the sixth Assembly of States Parties, held at United Nations Headquarters in New York, that the Court has quickly ‘established itself as the centrepiece of our system of international criminal justice’ in the five years since the Rome Statute creating the ICC entered into force.”

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10. Office of the Secretary-General, Cooperation is essential in determining effectiveness of International Criminal Court, Secretary-General tells states parties to the Rome Statute, 3 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/sgsm11310.doc.htm, http://www.un.org/apps/news/infocus/sgspeeches/statments_full.asp?statID=158

“Today’s Assembly, falling midway between these two historic dates, is a welcome opportunity to take stock of the Court’s standing and to reflect on some of the main challenges ahead. [...]

The International Criminal Court emerged as the answer. Unlike ad hoc tribunals of all kinds, the International Criminal Court is a permanent institution. Already, in the relatively short period of its existence, the Court has established itself as the centrepiece of our system of international criminal justice. It both embodies and drives a profound evolution in international culture and law. It serves notice to any would-be Milosevic or Charles Taylor that their actions today may lead to international prosecution tomorrow.

Indeed, I note with some satisfaction that two of the individuals indicted by the Court have been arrested and transferred into its custody. Yet, there are still a number of outstanding arrest warrants that have to be executed. I urge all Member States to do everything within their powers to assist in enforcing these warrants.

The single most important determinant of success for any international tribunals is cooperation. Cooperation from States, cooperation from the United Nations and other international organizations, cooperation from civil society and the NGO community, and cooperation from victims, witnesses and other individuals. Cooperation that results in financial support and political backing, and which flows from expressions of support in public, as well as behind closed doors.

And it is cooperation that will determine the effectiveness of the International Criminal Court, and the success of the Trust Fund for Victims that was also established under the Rome Statute.

Let me assure you that the United Nations will continue to cooperate with the International Criminal Court under our Relationship Agreement. We feel the UN can assist the Court in many ways. It can provide documents and information, it can supply logistical and other technical support to Court field operations, and it can even accommodate the Court in its security arrangements. Of course, the arrest and surrender of indicted individuals can only be undertaken by States, even where peacekeeping operations have been mandated to assist with the task.

That is why the cooperation of all States is essential to the work of the Court. Without it, the International Criminal Court cannot function. The Court, and the Trust Fund for Victims, needs the support and assistance of all States parties for the important work that is under way.

At present, the Court’s Prosecutor is investigating four situations: in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where, during one of the bloodiest conflicts in Africa, thousands of civilians, including countless children, have become victims of mass atrocities and abuse; in Darfur, where unspeakable crimes on a massive scale are still being committed; in northern Uganda, where the Lord’s Resistance Army abducted thousands of children and used them as child soldiers, servants and sex slaves; and in the Central African Republic, where particularly egregious allegations of rape and other acts of sexual violence against women have surfaced.

Some of these situations are still unstable, and peace has not yet completely taken hold. Under such circumstances, questions about the relationship between peace and justice are unavoidable.

There are no easy answers to this morally and legally charged balancing act. However, the overarching principle is clear: there can be no sustainable peace without justice. Peace and justice, accountability and reconciliation are not mutually exclusive. To the contrary, they go hand in hand.
And so the work of the International Criminal Court goes hand in hand with that of the United Nations. Our struggle for peace cannot succeed without your efforts for justice.”

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11. U.N. Press Release, International Criminal Court: Assembly of States Parties Meetings Coverage, UN Struggle for Peace Cannot Succeed without International Criminal Court’s Efforts for Justice, says Secretary-General to States Parties Assembly: Meeting Also Fills Judicial Vacancy, Electing Daniel David Ntanda Nsereko of Uganda to Four-Year Term as Judge, 3 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/L3119.doc.htm

“Stressing that there could be no peace without justice, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told the 105 signatory countries to the Rome Statute -- the instrument which formed the basis for the International Criminal Court -- that the work of the Court went hand in hand with that of the United Nations, since the struggle for peace could not succeed without the Court’s efforts for justice. [...]

In the debate that followed, the Secretary-General’s call for more cooperation was echoed by many delegations, particularly with respect to outstanding warrants of arrest for Sudanese citizens implicated in crimes against humanity in Darfur. Expressing deep concern that one of those at large was still a minister in the Government of Sudan, the representative of the United Kingdom remarked that justice was an essential part of delivering a sustainable peace, be it in Darfur, northern Uganda or elsewhere.

He joined others in asking the Security Council to send a clear message to the Sudanese Government, in which it should insist on the implementation of the arrest warrants. Meanwhile, States parties should consider providing assistance in witness protection, information sharing and sentence enforcement.

Another issue raised frequently at today’s debate was the possible inclusion into the Rome Statute of a definition of the crime of aggression, which refers to any act of aggression or war not out of self-defence.

Crimes of aggression fell under the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court, according to the Rome Statute. However, the Statute stipulates that the Court may not exercise its jurisdiction over the crime of aggression until States parties agreed on a definition of the crime and had set out the conditions under which it may be prosecuted. That subject was expected to figure prominently at the upcoming Review Conference of the Rome Statute, scheduled to take place some time after 2009.

Addressing that topic, France’s representative cautioned against a too-hasty approach, saying the situation was complex and touched on crimes that were more political than those already referred to in the Statute. Since crimes of aggression related to the maintenance of peace, which normally fell under the domain of the Security Council, its inclusion in the Statute might cause those States not yet party to hesitate to accede to that document.

Germany’s delegate expressed an opposing view, supported by some others, saying the Rome Statute already contained provisions outlining a careful balance between the Court and the Security Council with respect to the Court’s jurisdiction on crimes of aggression. He also noted that a Special Working Group on the Crime of Aggression had prepared a basis for proposals to the Review Conference, which he said was on ‘the right track’. Alongside a few others, he announced his Government’s readiness to elaborate a definition of aggression based on the 1974 General Assembly resolution on the matter.

In other business, the Assembly elected Daniel David Ntanda Nsereko ( Uganda) to fill one of three judicial vacancies alongside Mr. Cotte ( France) and Ms. Saiga ( Japan), who were elected on Friday. Also today, Ms. Saiga was selected, by lot, to fill the post vacated by Claude Jorda (France) on 12 August 2007, for a term lasting through 10 March 2009. The terms for Mr. Cotte and Mr. Nsereko will expire on 10 March 2012.

The representatives of Portugal (speaking on behalf of the European Union), Denmark, Liechtenstein, Costa Rica, Netherlands, Colombia, Belgium, Austria, Brazil, Jordan, Mexico, Venezuela, Lesotho, Uganda, Trinidad and Tobago, Uruguay, Nigeria, Ecuador, Senegal and Peru also delivered statements.

Also speaking were the First Vice-President of the Government of Spain; Vice-Minister for Foreign Affairs of Japan; Minister for Justice and Constitutional Development of South Africa; Minister for Human Rights of Chad; Assistant Minister of Justice of Croatia; Deputy Director of the Legal Advisory, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Argentina; Deputy Legal Adviser, Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of Switzerland; and Director General of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Norway. [...]

The Assembly paused in its general debate to proceed with the election of one judge of the International Criminal Court to fill the judicial vacancy that remained unfilled after the second round of voting on Friday. [...]

Following the vote, the representative of Trinidad and Tobago withdrew the candidature of Ms. Permanand. [...]

Following the fourth round of voting, Mr. Nsereko was elected to fill the third judicial vacancy, alongside Mr. Cotte (France) and Ms. Saiga (Japan), who were elected on Friday. Also today, Ms. Saiga was selected, by lot, to fill the post vacated by Claude Jorda (France) on 12 August 2007, for a term lasting through 10 March 2009. The terms for Mr. Cotte and Mr. Nsereko will expire on 10 March 2012.”

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12. U.N. News Service, Three judges elected to serve on the International Criminal Court, 4 December 2007, http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=24907&Cr=international&Cr1=court

“Three judges have been elected to fill vacancies on the 18-member International Criminal Court (ICC) after four rounds of voting at United Nations Headquarters in New York during the current session of the Assembly of States Parties to the ICC.

Bruno Cotte of France, Uganda’s Daniel David Ntanda Nsereko and Fumiko Saiga of Japan were chosen in secret balloting that began last Friday and concluded yesterday, according to a media statement issued by the ICC today. [...]

Mr. Cotte and Ms. Saiga were chosen after achieving the necessary two-thirds majority in the first round of balloting on Friday while Mr. Nsereko was elected in the fourth round yesterday. Jean Angela Permanand of Trinidad and Tobago and Graciela Dixon of Panama stood unsuccessfully as candidates.
After a drawing of lots yesterday, Ms. Saiga was selected to serve the remainder of Judge Claude Jorda’s term in office, which will end on 10 March 2009. The terms of Mr. Cotte and Mr. Nsereko will finish on 10 March 2012. [...]

A swearing-in ceremony for the new judges on the ICC, which is based in The Hague in the Netherlands, is tentatively scheduled for 17 January next year.”

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13. U.N. Press Release, Press Conference by Security Council President on December work program, 4 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/briefings/docs//2007/071204_Spatafora.doc.htm

“Luis Moreno-Ocampo, Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, would brief the 15-member body tomorrow, 5 December, on the situation in Sudan, Mr. Spatafora told correspondents at a Headquarters press conference this afternoon, following the Council’s consultations on its monthly work schedule. The next day, John Holmes, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and United Nations Emergency Relief Coordinator, would brief Council members on his nine-day trip to Africa, during which he had also visited Sudan’s strife-torn western region of Darfur.”

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14. U.N. News Service, Sudan to dominate Security Council’s intensive December schedule – President, 4 December 2007, http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=24917&Cr=sudan&Cr1=

“Briefing reporters in New York, Ambassador Marcello Spatafora of Italy, which holds the Council’s rotating presidency for this month, said the Council will be focusing on Sudan over the next several days. [...] Also on Sudan, the 15-member body will hear a briefing tomorrow from the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), Luis Moreno-Ocampo, on the Court’s activities related to Darfur. Then on Thursday, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator John Holmes will brief on his nine-day trip to Africa, during which he visited Darfur, as well as Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya.”

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15. U.N. Security Council, International Criminal Court Prosecutor tells Security Council Sudan’s Government ‘Not Cooperating’ in Darfur Investigation, Massive Crimes Continue: Two Arrest Warrants Issued on 27 April, No Steps Taken to Apprehend, Surrender; Asks Council for Strong Message Requesting Compliance with Resolution 1593 (2005), 5 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/sc9186.doc.htm

“‘I report today to the Security Council that the Government of the Sudan has not complied with its legal obligations,’ the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court said this morning, as the Council considered his report on the implementation of resolution 1593 (2005), which referred the situation in Darfur to the Court. [...]

“The Government of the Sudan is not cooperating with my Office, or the Court”, he said. The individuals had not been arrested and surrendered. The Sudan had taken no steps to prosecute them domestically. Ahmad Harun was still Minister of State for Humanitarian Affairs. The Sudanese Government’s official website announced that he had been appointed to the African Union-United Nations Hybrid Operation in Darfur (UNAMID) national monitoring mechanism group, overseeing the African Union-United Nations hybrid force’s deployment. [...]

He asked the Security Council to send a strong and unanimous message to the Government of the Sudan, requesting compliance with resolution 1593 and the execution of the arrest warrants. The same consistency was needed throughout the United Nations. It would be both inaccurate and confusing to convey in any way to the Government of the Sudan that the arrest warrants and the obligation to comply with resolution 1593 would go away. ‘You can make a difference, you can break the criminal system,’ he said. ‘What is at stake is, simply, the life or death of 2.5 million people.’ [...]

Following Mr. Ocampo’s briefing, many speakers expressed their support for the International Criminal Court as a pillar in the international community’s fight against impunity and concern at the fact that the Government of the Sudan was not cooperating with the Court’s Prosecutor and had not arrested the two indictees. The Government, they said, had showed thereby its disregard for the Council, which had referred the situation to the International Criminal Court under Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter. Many speakers also supported Mr. Ocampo’s new investigations and asked for a strong Council statement.

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16. U.N. News Service, Sudan has failed to cooperate with the International Criminal Court, Prosecutor says, 5 December 2007, http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=24933&Cr=sudan&Cr1=

“The Sudanese Government is not cooperating with the International Criminal Court (ICC), its Chief Prosecutor said today, calling on the Security Council to send ‘a strong and unanimous message’ to Khartoum to arrest and surrender two men accused of committing war crimes during the conflict in Darfur.”

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17. U.N. News Service, International Criminal Court: Assembly of States Parties Meeting Coverage, Assembly of States Parties to International Criminal Court elect Liechtenstein’s Permanent Representative for seventh through ninth sessions, 13 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/l3121.doc.htm

“The International Criminal Court’s Assembly of States Parties this morning unanimously elected Christian Wenaweser (Liechtenstein) as President for its seventh through ninth sessions.

Having served as his country’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York since 2002, Mr. Wenaweser was designated in 2003 as Chairman of the Special Working Group on the Crime of Aggression, and in that capacity had contributed greatly to the development of that issue.

Mr. Wenaweser said he was deeply honoured to have been elected in the present difficult and challenging time for the Court, and he looked forward to advancing all the issues that were important for it.”

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18. U.N. News Service, International Criminal Court: Assembly of States Parties Meetings Coverage, Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court Adopts Five Draft Resolutions as it Concludes Two-week Session, 14 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/l3122.doc.htm

“The Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court wrapped up its two—week sixth session today by adopting, without a vote, five draft resolutions.

In other actions, the Assembly adopted a draft recommendation concerning the post of Registrar of the Court and the vacancy announcement for the position. Bruno Cathala is the first person to hold the position. The Assembly also adopted the report on the work of the session and took note of five reports, four based on the output of its working groups.

Overseeing the proceedings was Assembly President Bruno Stagno Ugarte (Costa Rica), who will step down later this year at the start of the Assembly’s seventh session, upon completion of his three-year term. Also present was International Criminal Court President Philip Kirsch (Canada) and Registrar, Bruno Cathala (France), who will be concluding his term in July.

In paying tribute to Mr. Cathala, Mr. Ugarte said the international justice community owed a debt of gratitude to the man who had taken on the unenviable responsibility of building the Court from nothing, with a very small advance team, until it had grown into what it was today -- a fully functioning international legal instrument that would put an end to impunity for the greatest crimes against humanity.

South Africa’s representative, speaking in explanation of position after the Assembly’s action on the recommendation, said the Registrar should be selected before the deputy. Sierra Leone’s representative said the Registrar should play a role in appointing the deputy, as did the delegates of Senegal, Uganda and Kenya.

The reports before the Assembly were introduced by their focal leaders, with coordinator Christian Wenaweser (Liechtenstein), who was unanimously elected Assembly President yesterday for the seventh through ninth sessions, presenting that of the Special Working Group on the Crime of Aggression. Two new elements in the report were a suggested role for the Pre-Trial Chamber and a so-called ‘green light’ option for the Security Council’s role in the Court’s work.

Introducing the report of the Working Group on the Review Conference was focal point Rolf Fife (Norway). The report recommended holding the Review Conference in the first semester of 2010 and accepting Uganda’s offer to host the event, as a situation country in which the Court would be active.

Coordinator Masud Husain (Canada) introduced the report of the Working Group on the Permanent Premises, to which was annexed a resolution dealing with the decision to establish a Project Director’s Office with a budget of €208,500 to cover associated costs. The operational aspects of an architectural design competition were also included.

Hans Magnusson (Sweden), coordinator of the Working Group on the 2008 Programme Budget, introduced the relevant report, noting that concerns had been expressed in the Working Group over the slow implementation rate of the 2007 budget, and that a reduction in the 2008 budget could be covered by the Court’s flexibility in transferring funds within major programmes.

The Assembly also took note of the report of the Credentials Committee, introduced by Zeid Ra’ad Zeid Al-Hussein (Jordan), who said 105 representatives of States parties had been accredited for the sixth session.

For a resumed session to be held at Headquarters in New York from 2 to 6 June, the Assembly had before it a provisional agenda (document ICC-ASP/6/27) and took note of a verbal indication that the provisional list of participants had been emailed, and that corrections would be accepted by email until 20 December. Mr. Ugarte said that circulating the digital version of a lengthy provisional document saved on the need to print about 12,000 pages.

The draft resolution relating to the budget addressed the 2008 Working Capital Fund, the scale of assessment, and financing for 2008. By adopting that text, the Assembly decided that the scale of assessments for the Court would be the same as that of the United Nations General Assembly, with adjustments to take into account differences in membership. Total appropriations for 2008 would be €90,382,100.

Another draft resolution concerned an amendment to the text on financial regulations and rules, while yet another concerned amendments to the pension scheme for judges. That text was adopted as orally amended.

A detailed omnibus draft resolution on strengthening the Court and the Assembly was introduced by Marcelo Bohlke (Brazil), the focal point for informal consultations on the text, who called on all actors to contribute to the Trust Fund for the participation of the least developed countries in the Assembly’s work. The Trust Fund had enabled the participation of 13 States in the sixth session. The text also contained annexes with recommendations on the Plan of Action for achieving universality and full implementation of the Rome Statute, as well as draft rules of procedure for the 2010 Review Conference.

Uganda’s representative, speaking in explanation of position after the action, said the objectives of geographic representation and gender balance had not been achieved in Belgium, despite the best efforts, and the next selections should be made in New York.

Belgium’s representative noted the relevant provisions of the Rome Statute in indicating measures being taken to implement it.

Sabelo Sivuyile Maqungo (South Africa) introduced the draft resolution on the report of the Board of Directors of the Trust Fund.

Assembly Rapporteur Alina Orosan (Romania) introduced the draft resolution on the Assembly’s report, which was adopted as orally amended.

In concluding remarks, Court President Kirsch thanked the outgoing Assembly President, saying the Court had been at an early stage when he had assumed the presidency, and the Assembly had grown alongside the Court. The relationship between the two had deepened during those three years, with working groups operating both in The Hague and New York. Mr. Ugarte had been influential in enhancing the dialogue between States and the Assembly. He had introduced the general debate portion of the Assembly’s plenary, and that had made a great improvement. He had also guided the Assembly through its formative years, and when Mr. Wenaweser took over as the Assembly’s third president later in the year, attention could be turned fully towards securing sufficient cooperation with the Court.

At the end of the meeting, statements of appreciation for Mr. Ugarte’s work were expressed by the representatives of Sierra Leone (on behalf of the African States parties to the Rome Statute) and the delegates of Trinidad and Tobago, Australia, Slovenia and Jordan, who pointed out that Mr. Ugarte would be presiding over the resumed session in June.

Uganda’s representative called for the establishment of a fitting permanent tribute for Arthur Robinson of Trinidad and Tobago, who had been influential in the early establishment of the Court, and without whom the Court would not exist.

The representative of the Netherlands expressed special thanks to the Registrar and expressed the hope that all States felt confident in his country’s conduct of the Court’s permanent structure.

Finally, an announcement was made that the Court’s 2007 Outreach Report had been made available in New York on the occasion of the Assembly’s meeting.”

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19. U.N. Security Council, Departing Security Council Members give Briefings on Activities of Subsidiary Bodies over the Past Two Years, 17 December 2007, http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2007/sc9204.doc.htm

“JORGE VOTO-BERNALES (Peru), Chairman of the Committee established pursuant to resolution 1533 (2005) concerning the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Working Group created pursuant to resolution 1566 (2004) concerning counter-terrorism, said the measures established [...] aimed to prevent all armed Congolese and foreign militia from operating in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, particularly in the eastern part of the country. The Committee had created a list of persons and entities that violated those measures by illegally financing persons on the list, particularly by trafficking natural resources. Since July 2006, the list included the names of persons who recruited children or gravely violated the rights of children in armed conflict. [...]

The Committee had witnessed improved cooperation between border States and the Group of Experts during the past two years. More people and entities subject to the Council’s measures had been added to the list. The agreement reached in the Committee to transfer listed persons to the International Criminal Court in The Hague was perhaps the Committee’s greatest contribution to fighting impunity in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and strengthening international law.”