Coalition for the International Criminal Court
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Canada and U.S.A.
Canada has been involved from the very beginning of the modern effort to establish the ICC and has been providing leadership, advocacy and resources in support of the ICC ever since. Canada chaired the ‘Like-Minded Group’ during the Rome Diplomatic Conference to present a united and supportive position on the ICC and broker agreement on the Rome Statute’s main provisions. In 2000, Canada became the first country to adopt comprehensive implementing legislation on the Rome Statute. Mr. Philippe Kirsch, who chaired negotiations at the 1998 Rome Diplomatic Conference and the Preparatory Commission, was elected as an ICC Judge in February 2003 and as the Court’s President in March 2003. Canada ratified the Agreement on Privileges and Immunities (APIC) in June 2004. As the 10th State to ratify APIC, Canada triggered APIC’s entry into force in July 2004. The Canadian Government hosts a [[website]] (( which showcases Canada’s contribution to the effort to create the ICC and a section to promote the signature, ratification and implementation of the International Criminal Court.

While Canada has been strongly supportive of the Court, the United States has a recent history of opposition to the ICC. Since Nuremberg, the United States had historically supported international mechanisms to enhance accountability. United States’ President Bill Clinton signed the Rome Statute on December 31 December 2000, the last day that it was open for signature. Shortly after the Bush Administration entered office and just before the 1 July 2002 entry into force of the Rome Statute, US President George W. Bush “nullified” the Clinton signature on 6 May 2002, alleging that the United States would no longer be involved in the ICC process and that it did not consider itself as having any legal obligations under the treaty. The legality of such a “nullification” is unclear and the subject of debate by international legal scholars. Since 2002, the Bush
Administration has undertaken a policy of active opposition to the Court through a global campaign to obtain immunity from ICC jurisdiction through a multi-pronged approach.