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More on Bangladesh RS Ratification: CICC Press Release; ICC Press Release; Continued News Coverage
24 Mar 2010
Dear All,

On 23 March 2010, Bangladesh deposited its instrument of ratification of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) hence becoming ICC's 111th state party.

Please find below the press release issued by the Coalition for the International Criminal Court (CICC) on this occasion, ICC's related press release as well as continued news coverage.

Regards,

CICC Secretariat
www.coalitionfortheicc.org

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I. CICC PRESS RELEASE

"Bangladesh Joins the International Criminal Court as 111th State Party:
Dhaka makes history by putting its region on the map of countries committed to justice," Press Release, CICC, 23 March 2010, http://www.coalitionfortheicc.org/documents/Bangladesh_Ratification_PR_March2010_en.pdf

"New York/Dhaka - The Coalition for the International Criminal Court (CICC)-a global network of more than 2,500 non-governmental and civil society organizations in 150 countries-today applauded Bangladesh's ratification of the Rome Statute, the ICC's founding treaty, at United Nations headquarters.

Bangladesh actively took part in drafting the ICC treaty and signed it in 1999. Now Bangladesh becomes the first country in the South Asian sub-region to join the ICC. This ratification is an important step in the path to end impunity in a region vastly under-represented at the Court.

In Bangladesh, national and international civil society has been promoting the ICC ratification campaign for the past ten years and played a decisive role by actively engaging the most reluctant members of parliament and ensuring that public attention has remained focused on ratification. The government expressed its commitment during the visit of the ICC President Mr. Sang-Hyun Song to Bangladesh in December 2009, stating that it would ratify the treaty by March 2010.

'We applaud this ratification as it demonstrates that the movement to put an end to the commission of grave crimes keeps growing. Bangladesh is making history,' said Brigitte Suhr, Director of Regional Programs of the CICC. 'Today's ratification proves that civil society's tireless efforts have not been in vain.'

Despite strong civil society advocacy for international justice and the rule of law across the continent, the active participation of many Asian governments at the Rome Conference and Assembly of States Parties, as well as current representation at the ICC by President Sang-Hyun Song of the Republic of Korea, former Judge Fumiko Saiga and current Judge Kuniko Ozaki of Japan, Asia remains significantly under-represented at the ICC. To date, only 7 countries have ratified the Rome Statute (Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Mongolia, the Republic of Korea and Timor-Leste and Japan). It is our hope that the ratification of Bangladesh will inspire others in the region to join the movement to end impunity and ratify the Rome Statute.

'The government's decision to ratify culminates the campaign against genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity waged by the people of Bangladesh since 1971,' said Odhikar in a press release issued today. 'Bangladesh has demonstrated its commitment to international justice and no impunity for international crimes.'

As of March 2010, 111 countries have joined the ICC, which is the first permanent international court capable of trying individuals accused of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity. Central to the Court's mandate is the principle of complementarity, which holds that the Court will only intervene if national legal systems are unable or unwilling to do so. There are currently four active investigations before the Court: the Central African Republic; the Democratic Republic of Congo; Darfur, Sudan; and Uganda. There are also a number of situations under analysis including in Afghanistan, Chad, Côte d'Ivoire, Georgia and Kenya."

II. ICC PRESS RELEASE

"Bangladesh ratifies the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court," Press Release ICC-CPI-20100324-PR508, 24 March 2010, http://www.icc-cpi.int/NR/exeres/11E30A44-B00E-4100-978B-276E6A6B78BA.htm

"On 23 March, 2010, the government of Bangladesh ratified the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court. The Statute will enter into force for Bangladesh on 1 June, 2010, bringing the total number of States Parties to the Rome Statute to 111.

Reacting to Bangladesh's ratification of the Rome Statute, the ICC President, Judge Sang-Hyun Song, noted that 'By ratifying the Rome Statute, Bangladesh will become the first State Party in South Asia. I applaud its decision to join the growing commitment of states to end impunity for war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide.'"

III. RELATED NEWS COVERAGE

1. "Dhaka hailed for Rome Statute ratification", Daily Star, 24 March 2010, http://www.thedailystar.net/newDesign/latest_news.php?nid=22850

"The Coalition for the International Criminal Court (CICC) - a global network of more than 2,500 non-governmental and civil society organisations in 150 countries - Tuesday applauded Bangladesh's ratification of the Rome Statute, the ICC's founding treaty, at the UN headquarters.

A statement of the CICC from New York said Bangladesh actively took part in drafting the ICC treaty and signed it in 1999. Now Bangladesh becomes the first country in the South Asian sub-region to join the ICC.

'This ratification is an important step in the path to end impunity in a region vastly under-represented at the court,' the statement said...."

SEE ALSO:

2. "Bangladesh becomes first south Asian ICC member country," Sify, 24 March 2010, http://sify.com/news/bangladesh-becomes-first-south-asian-icc-member-country-news-international-kdypabaaaah.html

3. "Bangladesh joins International Criminal Court," DPA, 24 March 2010, http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/315563,bangladesh-joins-international-criminal-court.html

4. "Bangladesh, first in South Asia to ratify Rome Statute," TamilNet, 24 March 2010, http://www.tamilnet.com/art.html?catid=13&artid=31415

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CICC's policy on the referral and prosecution of situations before the ICC:

The Coalition for the ICC is not an organ of the court. The CICC is an independent NGO movement dedicated to the establishment of the International Criminal Court as a fair, effective, and independent international organization. The Coalition will continue to provide the most up-to-date information about the ICC and to help coordinate global action to effectively implement the Rome Statute of the ICC. The Coalition will also endeavor to respond to basic queries and to raise awareness about the ICC's trigger mechanisms and procedures, as they develop. The Coalition as a whole, and its secretariat, do not endorse or promote specific investigations or prosecutions or take a position on situations before the ICC. However, individual CICC members may endorse referrals, provide legal and other support on investigations, or develop partnerships with local and other organizations in the course of their efforts.

Communications to the ICC can be sent to:
ICC
P.O. box 19519
2500 CM the Hague
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