Press Releases 2012

Assembly of States Parties concludes its eleventh session

​On 21 November 2012, the Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (“the Assembly”) concluded its eleventh session in The Hague.

The Assembly adopted eight resolutions: on complementarity, cooperation, independent oversight mechanism, permanent premises, victims and reparations, amendments to the Rules of Procedure and Evidence, the “omnibus” resolution, and the 2013 budget. It also adopted the recommendation concerning the election of the Registrar.


Assembly of States Parties holds plenary on complementarity

On 19 November 2012, the Assembly of States Parties (“the Assembly”) to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (“the Court”), during its eleventh session, held a plenary discussion on complementarity. The Assembly heard a keynote address by Ms. Helen Clark, Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The panel discussion was moderated by H.E. Mr. Andries Nel, Deputy Minister of Justice of South Africa, and H.E. Mr. Thomas Winkler, Under Secretary for Legal Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark, as co-focal points of the Assembly on complementarity. The panellists were Ms. Claudia Paz y Paz Bailey, Attorney General of Guatemala, Ms. Shireen Fisher, President of the Special Court for Sierra Leone, and Mr. David Tolbert, President of the International Center for Transitional Justice. The President of the Court, Judge Sang-Hyun Song, and the Prosecutor, Ms. Fatou Bensouda, added their reflections at the end of the debate. The session was chaired by Ambassador Tiina Intelmann, President of the Assembly.

In her keynote address, Ms. Clark noted that UNDP was already engaged in rule of law and governance work aimed at helping to build the capacity of national partners to hold the perpetrators of the most serious crimes of international concern accountable. She advocated  integrating complementarity into rule of law programmes, which would ensure a broader impact on development matters. She referred to complementarity as a transformative agenda and urged the Assembly to continue engaging proactively with this topic.


Assembly of States Parties: Eleventh session

The opening of the eleventh session of the Assembly of States Parties was preceded by an event commemorating the Tenth anniversary of the entry into force of the Rome Statute, which took place in the Knight’s Hall with the presence of Her Majesty Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands. Remarks were made by H.E. Frans Timmermans, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, H.E. Tiina Intelmann, President of the Assembly, H.E. Judge Sang-Hyun Song, President of the International Criminal Court and Mr. Kon Kelei, former child soldier.

At the Assembly session, which started on 14 November, remarks were delivered by the President of Senegal, H.E. Macky Sall, the first State that had ratified the Rome Statute, the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs, Ms. Patricia O’Brien, and senior Court officials.


Trinidad and Tobago ratifies amendments to the Rome Statute on the crime of aggression and article 8

​The President of the Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute (“the Assembly), Ambassador Tiina Intelmann (Estonia) welcomed the deposit of the instrument of ratification of the amendments to the Rome Statute on the crime of aggression by Trinidad and Tobago. Trinidad and Tobago, became the third State Party to ratify the amendments that were adopted in a historic consensus at the 2010 Review Conference of the International Criminal Court (“the Court”) in Kampala. Trinidad and Tobago also ratified the amendments pertaining to article 8 of the Rome Statute, adopted at the same conference.

Speaking in the Hague, Ambassador Intelmann stated “I congratulate Trinidad and Tobago on their ratification of the Kampala Amendments, in particular those on the crime of aggression. It is fitting that Trinidad and Tobago, which has been an active supporter of the Court since before its creation, should be one of the first to ratify these historic amendments. This is year we have had three ratifications from as many regional groups. What better illustration of the universal nature of the value enshrined by these amendments – the criminalisation of waging illegal war backed up by a credible international judicial mechanism.”


Key event commemorates ICC 10th anniversary as Assembly of States Parties opens in The Hague

On 14 November 2012, more than 500 high-level officials attended a ceremony held in celebration of the 10th anniversary of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in the Ridderzaal (The Knights Hall) in The Hague (Netherlands), in the presence of Her Majesty the Queen of the Netherlands.


“As we embark on the ICC’s second decade, let us celebrate our achievements and be prepared for the many challenges ahead of us. We all have different roles, mandates and backgrounds, but we have the same goal. Impunity for atrocity crimes must end. Accountability must prevail. Always and everywhere. To succeed, we must remain determined and united”,declared ICC President Judge Sang-Hyun Song, “ICC’s activities are having an enormous impact, not just on individuals prosecuted before the Court, but on the tens of thousands of direct victims, millions of people in the affected communities and societies, and indeed several billion people under the legal protection of the Rome Statute system”, he added.


President of Senegal visits the International Criminal Court

Today, 14 November 2012, the President of the Republic of Senegal H.E. Macky Sall, visited the International Criminal Court (ICC), to meet with ICC President Sang-Hyun Song and other high-level officials of the Court.


Judge Song thanked the Senegalese President for his country’s longstanding cooperation and support, both operational and political, to the Court. “As the first State to ratify the Rome Statute, Senegal holds a special place in the ICC’s history”, said ICC President. “The ICC looks forward to working with Senegal and all other States Parties in the next decades to achieve our ultimate goal in ending impunity”, President Song added.


Eleventh Session of the Assembly of States Parties to be held from 14 to 22 November in The Hague

​The Assembly of States Parties (ASP) to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) will hold its eleventh session from 14 to 22 November 2012 at the World Forum Convention Center in The Hague, The Netherlands.

Journalists wishing to cover the session and related events are kindly requested to confirm their participation via e-mail to the following e-mail address: [email protected].


President of the Assembly visit to Addis Ababa


The President of the Assembly of States Parties (“the Assembly”), Ambassador Tiina Intelmann, visited Addis Ababa from 22 to 24 October 2012. Her visit comes at a time when States Parties are preparing for their next annual session to be held from 14 to 22 November 2012 in The Hague. 

The President used her presence in Addis Ababa to meet with representatives of States Parties and with officials of the African Union (“AU”) Commission. In her meetings, she noted the AU’s common resolve to fight impunity and discussed further ways of mutual interaction. She used her meetings to explore ways of cross-regional support to ensure accountability for international crimes and of promoting better understanding of the functioning of the Rome Statute system in Addis Ababa. The President also used the opportunity to better inform herself of the views on the International Criminal Court (“the Court”) from the perspective of the AU and its Member States. President Intelmann briefed her interlocutors on her own activities and those of the Assembly, especially in areas of domestic capacity building and achieving universality of the Rome Statute. 

Speaking at a Salon diplomatique, Ambassador Intelmann noted the renewed interest of the international community in the Court: on 17 October, the United Nations Security Council held its first-ever open debate on peace and justice with a focus on the Court. 

The President expressed her appreciation to all States Parties that took the floor during the open debate to reiterate their support for the Court and their commitment to the fight against impunity for the most serious crimes under international law. Many States Parties, noted the President, addressed the relationship between the Security Council and the Court, indicating ways to make the relationship more efficient and calling for consistent follow-up by the Council. The President also addressed misperceptions about the Court and the importance of continued political support of States Parties. 

President Intelmann’s visit followed the second joint AU-ICC technical seminar, which took place in Addis Ababa on 17 and 18 October 2012. The President thanked H.E. Mr. Libère Bararunyeretse, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the International Organization of La Francophonie to the AU for La Francophonie’s assistance in the preparation of this seminar, as well as for its continued support for the Court. 


ICC addresses the UN Security Council during the debate on Peace and Justice

​On 17 October 2012, in New York, the United Nations Security Council held an open debate on “Peace and Justice with a Special Focus on the Role of the International Criminal Court”, convened by the Guatemalan Presidency of the Security Council. The ICC President, Judge Sang-Hyun Song, and the Director of the Jurisdiction, Complementarity and Cooperation Division in the Office of the Prosecutor, Mr Phakiso Mochochoko, addressed the Council. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the President of the Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute, Ambassador Tiina Intelmann, and a number of Security Council members also participated in the debate. While the Prosecutor regularly briefs the Security Council on progress in situations referred to the Prosecutor by the Council – Darfur, Sudan and Libya – this is the first time that the ICC President has been invited to address the Security Council.

President Song highlighted that the “Security Council and the ICC are two highly distinct bodies, with very different roles”, which are nonetheless “connected by the shared objectives of peace, justice and respect for international law, enshrined in both the UN Charter and the Rome Statute”. President Song also noted that “[f]or the ICC to effectively deal with situations referred by the Council under Chapter VII, it needs to be able to count on the full and continuing cooperation of all UN members, whether they are parties to the Rome Statute or not”. He added that “[i]n making any future referrals, it would be very helpful if the Security Council could underline this obligation of full cooperation, without which it is very difficult for the ICC to discharge the mandate the Council has given it”. President Song closed his remarks by assuring the Security Council that the Court “will hold fast to the principles of prosecutorial and judicial independence and the rule of law”.


President of the Assembly meets Foreign Ministers on margin of UN meetings

The President of the Assembly of States Parties (“the Assembly”), Ambassador Tiina Intelmann, used the opportunities offered by the General Debate of the General Assembly of the United Nations and the High-Level Debate on the Rule of Law in New York to meet with ministers of non-States Parties to advance the cause of universal ratification and implementation of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (“the Court”).