The International Criminal Court (ICC or ICCt) is an intergovernmental organization and international tribunal that sits in The Hague in the Netherlands. The ICC has the jurisdiction to prosecute individuals for the international crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes. The ICC is intended to complement existing national judicial systems and it may therefore only exercise its jurisdiction when certain conditions are met, such as when national courts are unwilling or unable to prosecute criminals or when the United Nations Security Council or individual states refer investigations to the Court.
Currently, there are 124 states which are party to the Rome Statute and therefore members of the ICC. However, Burundi, South Africa, and the Gambia have given formal notice that they will withdraw from the Rome Statute.
African leaders on Tuesday adopted a strategy calling for a collective withdrawal from the International Criminal Court. Read here
So far, 39 individuals have been indicted by the ICC, including Ugandan rebel leaders Joseph Kony, Dominic Ongwen, the late Vincent Otti, Sudanese President Omar al- Bashir, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto, former Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, former Ivorian president Laurent Gbagbo, Bahr Abu Garda – Sudan, Mohammed Ali – Kenya. Others include: Abdallahbanda – Darfur, Jean- Pierre Bemba – CAR, Charles Ble’ Goude – Ivory coast, Saif al Islam Gaddafi – Libya, Simone Gbagbo – Ivory coast, Ahmed Haroun – Darfur, Abdel Rahim Hussein – Darfur, saleh jerboa – Darfur, Germain Katanga – DRC, Henry Kosgey – Kenya, Ali kushayb – Darfur, Thomas LubangaDyilo – DRC, RaskaLukwiya – LRA in Uganda, Almad al-mahdi – Mali , CallixteMbarushimana – DRC, SylvestreMudacumura – DRC, Francis muthaura – Kenya, Mathieu Chui – DRC, Bosco Ntaganda – DRC, OkotOdhiambo – LRA in Uganda, Joshua Sang – Kenya, Abdullah Senussi – Libya, among others.
This shows that African countries cooperated and indeed respected the spirit of the Statute. However, other member states with all glaring crimes against humanity within or outside their territories paid a deaf ear to the provisions of the Statute.
Robert Mugabe once said, Africa is a target not a participant of the International Criminal Court. Do you think he is right? Should African countries pull out of the ICC or should they remain?
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