Six new judges sworn in today at the seat of the International Criminal Court

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Today, 10 March 2015, six new judges of the International Criminal Court (ICC) were sworn in at a ceremony held at the seat of the Court in The Hague (Netherlands). Judges Marc Perrin de Brichambaut (France), Piotr Hofmański (Poland), Antoine Kesia-Mbe Mindua (Democratic Republic of the Congo), Bertram Schmitt (Germany), Péter Kovács (Hungary) and Chang-ho Chung (Republic of Korea) were elected for nine-year terms during the thirteenth session of the Assembly of States Parties (ASP) to the Rome Statute in December 2014. 

Judges Marc Perrin de Brichambaut, Piotr Hofmański, Bertram Schmitt, Péter Kovács and Chang-ho Chung will commence their service on a full-time basis at the Court on 11 March 2015. Judge Antoine Kesia-Mbe Mindua will commence at a later date.

The judges made a solemn undertaking in open court before the President of the ASP, Minister of Justice of Senegal, H.E. Mr Sidiki Kaba, stating: "I solemnly undertake that I will perform my duties and exercise my powers as a judge of the International Criminal Court honourably, faithfully, impartially and conscientiously, and that I will respect the confidentiality of investigations and prosecutions and the secrecy of deliberations".

ASP President H.E. Mr Sidiki Kaba welcomed the new judges to the Court: "It is a historic responsibility but also a great privilege. Your responsibility is to apply the law, to respect the spirit of the Rome Statute, and to work independently, thereby carrying out the functions which the States entrusted you with. But I do not doubt that you will perform your duties with independence, impartiality and  competence. »

ICC President Judge Sang-Hyun Song stated: "From tomorrow the new judges will be working together with their colleagues to reinforce the rule of law and continue to implement and develop a system of international criminal justice of which the ICC and its States Parties can be proud. In doing so, I am sure they will always remember the countless people around the world, especially the victims and vulnerable, who look to this Court with hope and expectation for a better, more just future."

Also attending the ceremony were the judges of the International Criminal Court, ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda, ICC Deputy Prosecutor James Stewart, and ICC Registrar Herman von Hebel, together with a large number of diplomats and other high-ranking guests, representatives of other international organisations in The Hague and members of the civil society.

The International Criminal Court has a bench of 18 judges who are nationals of States Parties to the Rome Statute. Judges are chosen from among persons of high moral character, impartiality and integrity who possess the qualifications required in their respective countries for appointment to the highest judicial offices. The election of the judges takes into account the need for the representation of the principal legal systems of the world, a fair representation of men and women, and equitable geographical distribution.

For further information, please contact Fadi El Abdallah, Spokesperson and Head of Public Affairs Unit, International Criminal Court, by telephone at: +31 (0)70 515-9152 or +31 (0)6 46448938 or by e-mail at: [email protected].

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