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INTERNATIONAL SEMINAR ON THE INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT
24 Apr 2008
The Ministry of Justice and the EC delegation in Vietnam hosted a workshop on 24-25 April on the ICC for government officials and other actors, including the CICC. As a follow up, the Vietnam lawyer’s Association is planning to organize a seminar in June to share comparative regional experiences regarding ratification of the Statute. Please see below for the full press release from the the EC delegation in Vietnam and the Vietnamese Ministry of Justice

“The Vietnamese Ministry of Justice supported by the Delegation of the European Commission to Vietnam organised for the first time an International Seminar on the International Criminal Court (ICC) in Danang on 24-25 April 2008, under the chairmanship of H.E. Mr Hoang The Lien, Standing Vice-Minister of Justice of Vietnam, assisted by Judge Hans-Peter Kaul, President of the Pre-Trial Division of the ICC, and H.E. Mr Sean Doyle, Ambassador – Head of EC Delegation to Vietnam.

By learning about and studying the Rome Statute as well as exchanging experiences and practical legislation from the ICC Members, the seminar aimed at collecting more information on the ICC and raising the awareness of the contents and practical implementation of the Rome Statute (RS) of the ICC. Information and experience learnt from this Seminar will help Vietnamese legal experts finalise their work of preparing a Comprehensive Study on the ICC, which is to be submitted to Vietnamese competent authorities.

About 100 Vietnamese and international participants and speakers attended the seminar, including representatives from agencies of the Party, National Assembly, Government, judicial and legal institutions, research institutes, universities, Vietnam Lawyers Association as well as Judges, experts of the ICC, legal officials and experts from many other Asian countries and the European Union.

There were six sessions: 1) Introduction to the Rome Statute; 2) Vietnamese Law, and the RS and the ICC; 3) General Obligation to cooperate with the ICC; 4) the RS and National Sovereignty; 5) Accession to the RS and 6) Future development of the RS.

Experts and participants went into detail on the contents of the RS, the achievements of the ICC in its contribution to international peace and justice; shared experiences and practice from some Asian and European countries in joining the ICC and perfecting their domestic laws; and analysed issues which Vietnam could face when studying the possibility to accede to the RS.

Vietnamese delegates focused their presentations on the relationship between the RS and Vietnam’s policies on criminal justice in the context of its current judicial reform, the comparison of the RS and Criminal Code, Criminal Procedure Code, provisions on mutual legal assistance on criminal matters and extradition in Vietnam, all of which are issues to be considered by Vietnam if it becomes a party to the RS; and procedures for accession to the RS under the Law on the conclusion, accession and implementation of international treaties of Vietnam.

As part of its reflection on joining the ICC, Vietnam has participated in several international conventions on human rights, on the competence of investigation, prosecution and judgement of the ICC, and on Conventions such as the Convention on the Non-applicability of Statutory Limitations to War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity (1968), Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide (1948), International Convention on Suppression and Punishment of the Crime of Apartheid (1973). In policy and in practice, Vietnam pursues its struggle for justice, and the advancement and development of humanity. Considering the possibility of accession to the RS is an appropriate and active contribution by Vietnam to the fight for justice and world peace.”