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States need to co-operate more with the International Criminal Court

According to a recent statement of a senior official – ICC Registrar Bruno Cathala -, the International Criminal Court (ICC) needs more co-operation from States. Considering the success of the recent arrest of Germain Katanga and his subsequent transfer to ICC custody (see our previous report) one may wonder, what the actual reason is behind this reminder from the ICC.

According to the ICC Registrar Bruno Cathala, “the credibility of the Court in the future as well as its capacity to prevent the commission of further crimes depends on a clear and consistent position on the part of States parties manifesting concrete support for execution of the Court’s decisions, public and diplomatic support, and respect for the judicial process.” Mr Cathala furthermore stated that “we really believe that this cooperation has to increase in the next few months.

The reason behind this statement is likely to be found in the fact that the ICC has still six arrest warrants outstanding, four relating to the conflict in Uganda and two relating to the Darfur region in Sudan. Apparently, the ICC is eager to try these people but is held back by the fact that the relevant persons are still at large.

Mr Cathala furthermore stated: “This issue of cooperation is very important. The Court’s contribution to achieving the aims of the Rome Statute depends not only on the activities of the Court itself but also on the extent of international cooperation provided by States and others in particular in the arrest and surrender of persons.

It is interesting to see that the complementary nature of the ICC, i.e. its inferior position to national prosecution of international crimes contained in the Rome Statute of the ICC, is not expressly mentioned.

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