NGO CICC Statement at the 14th session of the ICC Assembly of States Parties, delivered by NPWJ Secretary General

26 Nov, 2015 | Press Releases

The Hague, 26 November 2015
Mr. President, distinguished delegates, NGO colleagues,

Thank you for allowing us to make this brief statement at the conclusion of this XIV session of the Assembly of States Parties.

My name is Niccolò Figà-Talamanca, I am with No Peace Without Justice and I take the floor on behalf of the Coalition for the International Criminal Court.

Over the years, this Assembly and the States Parties have supported the fight against impunity for crimes under international law. By providing guidance on non-judicial functions, the Assembly has encouraged the Court as an institution to enhance its outreach functions; it has promoted complementarity; it has promoted cooperation; and it has worked to promote universal accession to the Rome Statute. This is to say that under your able and enlightened leadership Mr. President – and under the leadership of your predecessors – the Assembly has done more than just approve the Court’s budget or elect the Judges. The Assembly has been a crucial opportunity for States Parties to come together and find ways to provide non-judicial oversight.

And the Assembly should indeed provide guidance on non-judicial issues, recognising the priorities of the ICC as an institution. The legislative role of the Assembly is with respect to the Rules of Procedure and Evidence.

This role of the Assembly is very important and the roles are clearly defined. The Court and the Judges have a different responsibility. Again, these lines are very clear.

We ask the Prosecutor and the Judges not to enter into the political arena, as much as we ask the Assembly not to threaten the independence of the judiciary.

The language that was adopted today in the report will have no effect on the judicial decision making. Even more so on those decisions that are currently sub judice before the Appeals Chamber.

This language does not show a weakness of the Court –  it does show a weakness of this Assembly.

We place trust in the functioning of the Assembly.

And on this occasion, we can only be disappointed.

Thank you.

For further information, please contact: Alison Smith (Director of International Criminal Justice Program) on or +32-2-548 39 12 or Nicola Giovannini (Press & Public Affairs Coordinator) on or +32 2 548 39 15.

NPWJ and the ICC
No Peace Without Justice, which is a founding member of the NGO Coalition for the International Criminal Court (CICC) and which has been one of the organisations at the forefront of promoting the establishment and entry into force of the permanent International Criminal Court (ICC) and continues to work for its universal ratification, has participated in every session of the ASP since its first session in 2002, the year the ICC was established.