Argument: Cooperation in ICC and rule of law is best overall for stability

Issue Report: International Criminal Court


Dennis Kucinich. “The US Administration and the ICC”. Common Dreams. 9 Dec. 2004 – There are many in our United States government who do understand that Peace can only be obtained through international cooperation and adherence by all nations to high principles. We know that, as a matter of the survival of the human race, unilateralism must yield to multilateralism. The American electorate may experience a sharp partisan division. Today that division has been translated into policies which set the United States apart from the rest of the world on matters of the International Criminal Court, the nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty , the Kyoto Climate Change Treaty, the Biological Weapons Convention, the Chemical Weapons Convention, the Small Arms Treaty, and the Land Mines Treaty.

In times when principles of international unity are under attack, it is urgent for all those of us who appreciate the endless ways in which the people of the world are interrelated and interconnected to stand up, to assert and to enact principles which respect, assert and codify the imperative of human unity. Each of us has the responsibility and the gift to work within our sphere to construct a world where all may survive and thrive in peace and justice.

We must work tirelessly for ratification or accession to the Rome Statute. That is why we must remind our constituents of the urgency of having a sustainable system of international justice. 9/11 remains a crime against not only this nation, but a crime against humanity. The perpetrators of 9/11 must be brought to justice. But no one nation can or should meet the task alone. International cooperation is mandatory. Only the ICC presents a workable framework for the functioning of an international justice system which will affirm the basic human rights of all people of all nations and will deliver the world from a so-called war on terror which ends up producing terror of its own.

We must do this work regardless of who is or isn’t abusing power, regardless of who stands apart from the process or who is trying to wreck the process. We must focus on our own task, and reach out to all those who believe, as we do, that we can create a new world by international standards of justice.

The power of human unity is as inexorable as the power of human love. No matter how challenging things may seem in the moment, with compassion and patience we will create the world we seek, and those who today stand at the periphery of that world must continue to be welcomed inside, without fear. Thanks to each of you for truly being parliamentarians for global action.

Judge Philippe Kirsch, President of the International Criminal Court. “Applying the Principles of Nuremberg in the ICC”. Keynote Address at the Conference “Judgment at Nuremberg” held on the 60th Anniversary of the Nuremberg Judgment. 30 Sept. 2006 – The first principle is that individuals can and should be held accountable for the most serious international crimes. The judgment of the Nuremberg Tribunal famously declared, “Crimes against international law are committed by men, not by abstract entities, and only by punishing individuals who commit such crimes can the provisions of international law be enforced.” Ensuring accountability is important in itself, but it is also important because allowing impunity for widespread or systematic atrocities can have serious consequences for international peace.