EU urges Government action on International Criminal Court
Representatives of the European Union in Nepal met with the Foreign Secretary, Mr Gyan Chandra Acharya, today to encourage the Government of Nepal to ratify the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
The EU fully supports the ICC which was established in 2002 to prosecute individuals for genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes. The EU is committed to working with international partners to prevent such crimes and putting an end to impunity.
The EU welcomed the unanimous vote of Parliament to urge the Government of Nepal to accede to the International Criminal Court and also welcomed the Government of Nepal’s declared commitment in this regard.
Paul Bute, Chargé d’Affairs of the British Embassy, speaking on behalf of the EU said, “The EU urges the Government to now make final arrangements to accede to the Rome Statute as soon as possible.”
Notes for editors: The ICC can only prosecute crimes committed on or after 1 July 2002, or, should the State in question have become party to the Statute at a later time, after the date of ratification or accession.
As of October 2007, 105 states are members of the ICC. A further 41 countries have signed but not ratified the Rome Statute. However, a number of states, including China, India and the United States, are critical of the Court and have not joined.
The ICC can exercise jurisdiction only in cases where the accused is a national of a state party, the alleged crime took place on the territory of a state party, or a situation is referred to the Court by the United Nations Security Council. The Court is designed to complement existing national judicial systems: it can exercise its jurisdiction only when national courts are unwilling or unable to investigate or prosecute such crimes. Primary responsibility to investigate and punish crimes is therefore left to individual states.