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Fifth Election – 2009During the eighth session of the Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute of the ICC taking place in The Hague from 18 to 26 November 2009, States held elections to fill two judicial vacancies at the Court. Silvia Fernandez de Gurmendi (Argentina, List A) and Kuniko Ozaki (Japan, List B) were elected to serve as ICC judges.
The judicial vacancies result from a communication by Judge Mohamed Shahabuddeen (Guyana) of 16 February 2009, wherein he indicated that he would not be in a position to assume his duties as a judge, and the passing away of Judge Fumiko Saiga (Japan) on 24 April 2009. Judge Shahabuddeen and Saiga had been elected by the ASP in January 2009 for nine-year terms.
The new Judges Ozaki and Fernandez de Gurmendi will serve for the remainder of their predecessor’s term of office, in accordance with Article 36 of the Rome Statute and shall be eligible for re-election.
The CICC campaigns for States to nominate the most impartial, highly qualified and representative individuals. The CICC will continue to advocate for fair and transparent elections.
The ASP will elect those judges who obtain the highest number of votes with a two-thirds majority of States present and voting from a pool of candidates nominated by individual states parties. Candidates shall have established competence in criminal law and procedure (list A candidates) or in relevant areas of international law (list B candidates). The procedure used for nominations and elections of judges requires States Parties to take into account the representation of the principal legal systems of the world, equitable geographical representation, a fair representation of female and male judges, and judges with legal expertise on specific issues including, but not limited to, violence against children or women.
In order to redress unbalanced geographic representation, the vacancies to be filled at the eighth session of the ASP should have drawn in principle only from the Group of Asian States or the GRULAC category of Latin American and Caribbean countries. Following the Czech Republic’s ratification of the Rome Statute on 21 July 2009, the Eastern European Group is underrepresented and thus entitled to nominate candidates at the upcoming elections. However, the Eastern European Group has already informed the ASP Bureau of their intention to refrain from nominating candidates for the upcoming elections.
CICC letters were sent to all States Parties to encourage them to nominate or support the nomination of highly qualified candidates through a transparent process.
Five candidates have been nominated as replacements to be considered at the eighth session of the Assembly of State Parties in November 2009: Marco Gerardo Monroy Cabra (Colombia, List B), Silvia Fernandez de Gurmendi (Argentina, List A), Kuniko Ozaki (Japan, List B), Duke Pollard (Guyana, List B), and Cecelia Medina Quiroga (Chile, List B).
The original nomination period ran from 5 August – 21 September 2009 but had to be extended twice (initially to 30 September, and later to 14 October) in order to ensure that at least twice the number of candidates fulfilling the requirements would be nominated.
Nominations by region
African States: 0 nominations
Asian States: 1 nomination
Eastern European States: 0 nominations
Latin American and Caribbean States: 4 nominations
Western European and other States: 0 nominations