On 10 August 2010, the Government of the Republic of Seychelles formally deposited the “Instrument of Ratification” of the Rome Statute, the founding treaty of the International Criminal Court, to UN Secretary General’s office. Seychelles’s ratification brings the total number of States Parties to the Court to 112 and is an important step towards universal support for ending impunity, particularly in the African Indian Ocean sub-region.

Statement by Alison Smith, Legal Counsel of No Peace Without Justice:

“No Peace Without Justice and the Nonviolent Radical Party, Transnational and Transparty congratulate the Republic of Seychelles for this very important step, which concludes a lengthy and complex legislative process and has involved sustained commitment from all levels of Seychelles society, from civil society through parliamentarians to government officials.

“Seychelles’ decision to join its 30 African counterparts as a State Party to the Rome Statute of the ICC, amid recent calls for non-cooperation with the ICC from the 15th African Union Summit, demonstrates its clear commitment to stand on the side of victims of systematic human rights violations and will hopefully encourage other African states to follow its steps.

“Now that Seychelles has ratified the Rome ICC Statute, it must now ensure that it has in place appropriate procedures to enable it to cooperate fully with the ICC and to fulfill its complementarity obligations. We look forward to Seychelles taking this next important step as soon as possible, further solidifying its commitment to the victims of these crimes and to justice as an integral part of peace.”

“We very much hope that other countries will draw inspiration from Seychelles’ example and ratify the Rome Statute with all possible speed, which would ensure more active participation both in the Assembly of States Parties and in the work of the ICC itself”.

For more information, please contact Alison Smith, Coordinator of NPWJ’s International Criminal Justice Program, on asmith@npwj.org or +32-(0)2-548-3912, or Nicola Giovannini on ngiovannini@npwj.org or +32-2-548-39 15.