The International Criminal Court (“ICC” or the “Court”) today commemorates 17 July, the Day of International Criminal Justice. On this day in 1998, the Rome Statute was adopted. The Rome Statute is the founding treaty of the ICC, which created the Court and the Trust Fund for Victims.
Marking the day, ICC President Judge Piotr Hofmański stated: “The mission of the ICC is to fight impunity for the most serious crimes under international law. We focus on delivering accountability for the perpetrators and redress to victims, in accordance with the rule of law and with full judicial independence. As we mark the Day of International Criminal Justice, the 17th of July, we reflect on our commitment to continuous improvement in performing that crucial mandate.”
Virtual events are being hosted to mark the anniversary, and information campaigns continue online and via the ICC’s country offices in the Central African Republic, Côte d’Ivoire, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Georgia, Mali and Uganda.
A virtual event to mark the day was hosted on 16 July by the Coalition for the International Criminal Court (“CICC”), commemorating the adoption of the Rome Statute and reflecting on the current challenges and opportunities in a discussion with several high level experts including the Assembly of States Parties (“ASP”) President, Silvia Fernández de Gurmendi, ICC First Vice-President, Judge Luz del Carmen Ibáñez Carranza, ICC Prosecutor, Karim A.A. Khan QC, and ICC Registrar, Peter Lewis.
The ASP President, as well as the ICC President, Prosecutor and Registrar are also scheduled to deliver remarks at a virtual event commemorating the Day of International Criminal Justice coordinated by the Permanent Mission of Brazil to the United Nations from the UN Headquarters in New York at a meeting of the ICC Group of Friends. The event, to be held on 21 July, will be attended by representatives of States Parties to the Rome Statute as well as civil society.
On 17 July itself, ICC Judge Chang-ho Chung and ICC Judge Tomoko Akane will participate in a virtual Asia-Pacific Forum marking the day. The event, co-organised by the ICC and The Hague Project Peace and Justice, aims at promoting greater participation in the Court by the countries of the region.
These events and more are covered on the ICC’s social media platforms, which are also highlighting the Court’s ongoing online campaign: “Building a #MoreJustWorld.” With a focus on inspiring human interest stories from the ICC’s Outreach blog, “Life After Conflict” and “Justice at Work” story series, the campaign encourages audiences from around the world to reflect, act, learn and connect for the cause of peace and justice. It also highlights the innovations in the Rome Statute and the work of the Court in contributing to global efforts to build a more just world.
Background: 17 July unites all those who support ending impunity for the most serious crimes of international concern through the due process of law, promoting victims’ rights, and contributing to the prevention of such crimes. Adopted on 17 July 1998, the Rome Statute is the ICC’s founding treaty, ratified by over 120 countries. The ICC is the first permanent international criminal court established to help end impunity for the perpetrators of the most serious crimes of concern to the international community, namely war crimes, crimes against humanity, genocide and the crime of aggression. The Rome Statute also established the Trust Fund for Victims with a two-fold mandate: (i) to implement Court-ordered reparations and (ii) to provide physical and psychological rehabilitation and material support to victim survivors, their families, and affected communities. The TFV assists survivors to begin the process of healing and rebuilding their lives.