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International Justice Day: CICC Press Release and List of Activities of CICC Members
16 July 2010
As you know, tomorrow Saturday 17 July 2010 is International Justice Day, celebrated in honor of the anniversary of the adoption of the Rome Statute, the founding treaty of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
Coalition members are celebrating this day in solidarity with victims of crimes against humanity, genocide and war crimes through a number of worldwide events. Find below the CICC Press Release and a list of the activities being held by our members.
Note that today, in advance to tomorrow's celebration, the CICC Convenor William R. Pace participated in a live blogging session on the Coalition's blog "In Situ: See Justice through the Eyes of Civil Society". You can access to the full transcript of the interview at: http://www.coalitionfortheicc.org/blog
I. CICC PRESS RELEASE
"INTERNATIONAL JUSTICE DAY: WORLD CELEBRATES 12TH ANNIVERSARY OF NEW global SYSTEM to end impunity : Global Coalition Urges States to Deliver on Review Conference Commitments and Reiterates its Call for Universality of the Rome Statute," 16 July 2010
"Tomorrow 17 July the world will celebrate International Justice Day, in honor of the anniversary of the adoption of the Rome Statute, the founding treaty of the International Criminal Court (ICC). International Justice Day is a reminder of the urgency for all States committed to justice to ensure continued support for the Rome Statute's international justice system, the Coalition for the International Criminal Court (CICC) said today.
Twelve years ago on this date, the Rome Statute was adopted by an overwhelming vote of 120 nations. Today, 111 nations have joined the Court and the number keeps growing. Coalition members will celebrate this day in solidarity with victims of crimes against humanity, genocide and war crimes through a number of worldwide events.
'International Justice Day is a time to affirm that victims of crimes against humanity, genocide and war crimes deserve redress and that the ICC treaty is a great victory for the protection of universal human rights and the advancement of human security' said CICC Convenor William R Pace. 'Most of the ad hoc and special tribunals have begun the process of winding down. So today, we urge all States, international organizations, civil society and the world's media to reaffirm their commitment to justice, and to the goal that all nations should ratify the Rome Statute of the ICC, the world's only permanent system for international criminal justice,' he added.
International Justice Day is an opportunity for the world community to celebrate the historic advances in ending impunity for the worst crimes in international law. Since 1993, 181 trials, dealing with terrible crimes committed in 12 countries have been held by six international and special tribunals. Similar trials for the gravest crimes are ongoing at national level. 2 trials are being conducted at the ICC so far, investigations in 5 countries were opened, and twelve arrest warrants and three summonses to appear were issued. Allegations of crimes committed in many other countries are being considered by the ICC Prosecutor.
This year, International Justice Day takes place only a few weeks after the conclusion of the first Review Conference of the ICC Rome Statute, which was held in Kampala, Uganda from 31 May to 11 June. At the Conference, ICC Member States agreed upon amendments to the Rome Statute. In particular, the Review Conference adopted a definition for the Crime of Aggression as well as provisions governing the terms of the Court's ability to investigate and prosecute individuals for the crime of aggression. In Kampala, States also made important commitments on the issues of cooperation, complementarity, victims and affected communities and peace and justice. The Coalition for the ICC now calls on States to turn words into concrete actions.
These actions may take the form of encouraging states that have not done so to join the Rome Statute; ratifying the Agreement on privileges and immunities (APIC); implementing the Rome Statute into national law; showing consistent public support for international justice and the work of the Court; responding positively to the Court's cooperation requests; signing enforcement of sentences or victims and witnesses and victims relocation agreements with the ICC; and providing funds to the Trust Fund for Victims as well as to the Court so that it can improve its outreach and related field work. Civil society, cultural, and educational initiatives for international justice should also be supported.
The Coalition for the ICC is a civil society network of 2,500 organizations in 150 countries advocating for a fair, effective and independent ICC. Through this committed global partnership, the Coalition's guiding mission is to make justice universally accessible for victims of the gravest crimes in an effort to secure lasting peace."
II. CICC MEMBERS ACTIVITIES ON THE IJ DAY
DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE CONGO
The DRC Coalition for the ICC plans to hold discussions with civil society actors about Congolese perceptions of the Rome Statute of the ICC.
Arche d'Alliance, an NGO member of the DRC National Coalition for the ICC, will organize 2 major conferences in the province of South Kivu in eastern DRC. The conferences will take place in Uvira and Baraka respectively, where authorities, political and civil society leaders, and various agents of justice will meet to discuss the role of the ICC in the global fight against impunity and the ICC's impact on and role in building peace in societies. Furthermore, Arche d'Alliance will host radio programs broadcast in local languages to dispel misunderstandings and spread knowledge of the Court among the rural population.
AFEDE, an organization based in South Kivu that supports women and children for the development of an endogenous environment, will participate in activities planned by Arche d'Alliance. AFEDE also plans to organize a meeting with peasants in Fizi territory to discuss the activities of the ICC and its role in promoting peace and human rights by fighting against impunity for serious crimes. The meeting will demonstrate an effort to dispel misunderstandings about the ICC, especially the belief that the Court was created solely to pursue Congolese politicians.
SYCOVI, a group of Congolese NGOs, including members of the DRC Coalition for the ICC, such as LIPADHO, FOCDP, CADEP, ACADOSHA, among others - plans to hold a panel discussion for students at the University of Kinshasa. The discussion will focus on the challenges of international justice in the DRC in relation to victims. In addition, there will be a brief presentation on the process of the adoption of the Rome Statute of the ICC, and a reenactment of the Review Conference which was held in Kampala.
Following the disappearance of civil society actors such as Floribet Chebeya (VSV), Pascal Kabungulu (Heritier de la Justice), Serge Maheshe, and journalist Radio Okapi, Pax Chrsti Goma has organized two events to raise awareness on: (1) the merits of the ICC, its mandate , and understanding of DRC's ratification of the Rome Statute; and (2) the jurisdiction and membership of the Court, and reasons to support the institution and to positively understand its work. The target of these events include community leaders, opinion leaders, students, and political and military authorities. Pax Christi Goma further plans to use independent and public media outlets to broadcast its work (especially through radio shows), post banners, and perform skits or scenarios to further demonstrate its solidarity for international justice.
Mr. Muamba Kalul, a lawyer at the Court of Appeals in Kinshasa, plans to hold a marathon for international justice on 17 July, on behalf of certain lawyers in the DRC. The marathon will demonstrate lawyers' commitment to supporting and promoting the activities of the ICC in (and for) the DRC.
The Northern Uganda Transitional Justice Working Group (NUTJWG), in partnership with the North East Chili Producers Association (NECPA), plans to hold a series of activities and celebrations at Alang Primary School in Kole District, which will culminate in a curtain raiser football match between civic leaders, cultural, religious and civil societies, and victims. Following these activities, victims' groups will participate in a final football game on 17 July 2010. Other activities will include the mobilization of leaders to embrace justice, peace and reconciliation, a consultative meeting with stakeholders in Lango sub-region, and the mapping of Transition Justice activities in Uganda. There will be music, dance, and drama to punctuate the events.
On 1 July, 2010, representatives of civil society organizations in Uganda - which included unions of persons with disabilities, women's groups, local leaders, and many more - joined in Soroti to commemorate the eighth anniversary of the entry into force of the Rome Statute. Events included: a march through the main streets of the municipality, a town-hall style meeting with various key note speakers, an ICC moot court demonstration or role model play, and two interactive radio talk shows. For more information please visit this ICC Press Release at http://www.icc-cpi.int/menus/icc/press and media/press releases/pr553.
The Cote d'Ivoire National Coalition for the ICC (CI-CPI) has the pleasure to invite you to its 3rd edition of "Les Grands Debats de la CI CPI pour la Justice," to be held on 17 July 2010 at 9 a.m. at Pullman Hotel (formerly Hotel Sofitel), in Abidjan. The event will include an introduction on the ICC on behalf of Ali Ouattara, president of CI-CPI, a discussion on Cote d'Ivoire's position on the ICC, and justice as a vector for lasting peace.
Zarga Organization for Rural Development will hold a workshop for human rights activists on July 17 to highlight the plight of civil war victims who have suffered from genocide and rape among other crimes.
On 22 July 2010, the Benin Coalition for the ICC will be discussing the ICC and the outcomes of the Review Conference during a one hour segment broadcast on national TV stations.
On 17 July, Prepared Society will host a screening of The Reckoning at Mombasa Baptists High School. Following the screening, they will hold an open forum to discuss the ICC. Activities will start at 2 p.m.
The Turkish Coalition for the ICC will organise a meeting (the 3rd one of a series) to introduce the Victims rights manual will take place on 17 July in Ankara titled "Global Justice and Rights of the Victims." The TCICC will issue a PR on that day. It will take placed on Saturday July 17, 2010 from 10:00 to 13:00 at the Best Hotel, Ankara. The agenda of the meeting will include:
- 10:00 to 10:30: Presentation of the work of the Turkish Coalition for the International Criminal Court;
- 10:30 to 11:15 Universal Justice for Victims;
- 11:15 to 11:30 Break
- 11:30 - 12 00 Presentation of the Victims' Rights Manual;
- 12:00 to 13:00 The ICC in Turkey: ratification and implementation.
On Saturday 17 July, the Georgian Coalition will issue a press release in Georgian (to be translated in English) to commemorate International Justice Day.
Weekly Regional Newspaper "Kartlis Khma" (The Voice of Khartli) has dedicated to issue to International Justice and the ICC.
There will also be a roundtable with affected communities (targeting two age groups: adults and youngsters from 13-17 who will be adressed separately) titled "Justice after the War: How do people see it?" in Gori (date and time to be confirmed).
On Friday 23 July, Ana Natsvlishvili of the Georgian Coalition will conduct a training of journalists organised by Institute for War and Peace Reporting (IWPR) and Georgian Human Rights Center (HRIDC) on how to cover issues related to ICC.
On 17 July, Amnesty International - Luxembourg will organize an information stand in the Place Piquet in the centre of the city between 9am and 2pm to raise awareness on the importance of IJ and fight against impunity. See: http://www.amnesty.lu/spip/index.php.
MIDDLE EAST/NORTH AFRICA
The Sisterhood is Global Institute, in cooperation with the Jordanian National Coalition for the ICC is organization a celebration to commemorate "International Justice Day and Nelson Mandela Day" on 17 July 2010 at 11am in the Al-Hussein Cultural Center under the patronage of HE Mr. Taher Hikmat in order to shed light on the national and global efforts in establishing justice and promoting human rights and to support the International Criminal Court for the performance of its role in international criminal justice.
On 5 July 2010, the Arab Center for the Independence of the Judiciary and Legal Profession (ACIJLP) issued a press release commemorating International Justice Day and celebrating the anniversary of the Rome Statute. ACIJLP called on Arab governments to take effective action to join the ICC and urged the Arab League to urge its members to ratify the Rome Statute. It also called on Arab Coalition for the ICC members to place the ICC at the top of their agendas.
On 14 July 2010, the Moroccan Center for Human Rights (OMDH) sent a letter for the Prime Minister of Morocco commemorating the anniversary of the Rome Statute and calling for Morocco to ratify. The letter followed an training session held on 10-11 July on the ICC organized by OMDH in coordination with the International Center for Transitional Justice (ICTJ) and the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung Foundation. It was attended by members of the Moroccan Coalition and journalists as well and was followed by a screening of "The Reckoning."
On July 17, the Bangladesh Coalition for the ICC will have an internal meeting to commemorate International Justice Day and reflect on developments since the adoption of the Rome Statute, twelve years ago. The national coalition will also evaluate the outcomes of the Review Conference.
In commemoration of International Justice Day, the Indonesian Coalition for the ICC carried out a roundtable discussion on the ICC. The Coalition reported its participation in the Review Conference in Kampala, and government officials, including representatives from the Ministry of Law and Human Rights, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Parliament, as well as members of the academia, shared the development of their work, as well as opinions on the ICC. The roundtable also provided an opportunity to come up with a strategy for advocacy to continue pushing for Indonesia's ratification of the Rome Statute.
The Indonesian Coalition for the ICC will offer a screening of The Reckoning in commemoration of International Justice Day.
On 20 July 2010, there will be a book launching for "Jalan Panjang Menuju Ratifikasi ICC di Indonesia". The book records all the experiences and journey of Indonesian Civil Society's campaign towards ratification of the Rome Statute in Indonesia, as a basis for reflection and learning process of the Coalition's work for a better justice and human rights protection in Indonesia.
To mark International Justice Day, the Nepalese Coalition for the ICC (NCICC) and the Informal Sector Service Centre (INSEC) will hold a discussion with political parties and representatives of the international community including diplomatic missions in Nepal. This meeting is planned for 20 July.
On 17 July, the NCICC will issue a press release, and INSEC's regional offices in five development regions plan to organize demonstrations/sit-in programs to create pressure for the immediate accession to the RS.
On 25 July, to mark the fourth anniversary of the unanimous resolution of the former legislature in Parliament which approved the accession to the RS, the Nepalese Coalition will be publishing appeals in national newspapers demanding the immediate implementation of the directives of the former legislature.
On July 17, Rommel Santos, General Coordinator of the Dominican Coalition for the ICC (Coalición Dominicana de Apoyo a la Corte Penal Internacional) will offer a TV interview at the program "Visión Ciudadana", where he will share some views on Dominican Republic's role before the ICC. The Dominican Coalition will also launch a Press Release to mark International Justice Day.
The Comisión Mexicana de Defensa y Promoción de los Derechos Humanos, a member of the Mexican Coalition for the ICC, is organizing, together with the Human Rights Commission of the Federal District of Mexico, and the Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Penales, a forum to commemorate International Justice Day. The forum titled "Mexico Frente a la Justicia Internacional" (Mexico and International Justice) will be held on July 15 and will include four speakers, among them Hector Carreon on behalf of the Mexican Coalition for the ICC and Humberto Guerrero on behalf of the Comisión Mexicana de Defensa y Promocion de los Derechos Humanos.
The Grupo de Interés en el Estatuto de Roma in Peru will be issuing a Press Release in commemoration of International Justice Day where they will call on the Peruvian State to complete the implementation of the Rome Statute within domestic legislation, a process that has been stalled for several years in Congress. Noteworthy, the Press Release refers to one of the pledges made by the Peruvian delegation during Kampala, where the country committed itself to finalizing said implementation process.
On Tuesday July 13th the NYC Bar Association held a panel on International Justice Day and the ICC which included as speakers the Hon. Patricia O'Brien, Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs and United Nations Legal Counsel H. E. Mr. Christian Wenaweser, Permanent Representative of Liechtenstein to the United Nations, President of the ICC Assembly of States Parties David Tolbert, President, International Center for Transitional Justice. The speakers offered an overview of the developments of the ICC during its years of operation, as well as the outcomes of the Review Conference of the Rome Statute. The event was sponsored by the Council on International Affairs and Committee on International Human Rights. It was co-sponsored by the American Coalition for the International Criminal Court (AMICC); Committee on International Criminal Law, ABA Section of International Law; and the Coalition for the International Criminal Court (CICC).
AMICC has also prepared a document with proposed bullets and talking points for individuals who wish to write an Op-Ed or a Letter to the Editor in their local newspapers, on the subject of International Justice and/or the ICC.
There will also be rally for International Justice in Union Square, NYC which is sponsored by AMICC, Amnesty International USA, Student World Assembly, Council of American Students in International Negotiations and the United Nations Association of the USA.
AMICC is sponsoring three workshops on "Yoga and Justice" to be celebrated on July 16, 17 and 18.
On July 17, International Justice Central (IJ Central), an outreach initiative of Skylight Pictures) will launch a new section on the site called "Ask the Prosecutor", where Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo will answer questions from the general public concerning the ICC. The Prosecutor will also be posting monthly video updates on the cases and investigations moving their way through the ICC.
On Friday, 16 July 2010, the Coalition for the ICC Secretariat will host a LIVE QUESTION AND ANSWER SESSION with CICC Convenor, William R Pace, on FRIDAY 16 JULY 2010 from 4 to 5 p.m. CET (10-11 a.m. EST) on the Coalition's blog at http://www.coalitionfortheicc.org/blog. CICC Convenor William R. Pace will answer questions on the Rome Statute system and reflect on key outcomes of the recent ICC Review Conference. To follow the live discussion, visit the Coalition's blog "In Situ: See Justice through the Eyes of Civil Society", at: http://www.coalitionfortheicc.org/blog. We kindly invite you to submit your questions during the live event or in advance to: [email protected].
The American Non-Governmental Organizations Coalition for the ICC (AMICC) has posted to its website a guide to "Organizing a Celebration for July 17, International Justice Day", available online at http://www.amicc.org/docs/July17.pdf.