International Criminal Court: Strong or weak?

The International Criminal Court started working in the Hague on July 1. The adequate document was signed and ratified by 74 countries, whereas the minimum is 60. The mission of the new organization is surely global: the court will consider anti-human and genocide crimes.

Israel has already rejected the International Criminal Court: the government of this country is in fear, lest the court should start probing the construction of Jewish settlements on the land that had been captured during the 1967. Israeli Deputy Minister for Immigrant Absorption Yuli Edelstein said that Israel was cautious regarding the International Criminal Court in the Hague. The official added that Arab countries and the countries of the third world were getting the majorities in such organizations, passing anti-Israel resolutions freely, without getting into details.

Needless to mention, Israel is not going to be alone. Such countries as China, India, Pakistan, Indonesia, Turkey are not going to participate in the work of the International Criminal Court. These countries have not made their first steps yet; they have not signed the document regarding the establishment of the court. Egypt, Iran, Indonesia, Japan, Russia, and Israel have not yet ratified the Roman statute.

In addition to that, the USA – the only super-power on the planet - has a negative attitude toward the idea of the International Criminal Court as well. Americans are taking rather a tough position in this respect. On June 30, the USA vetoed the decision of the UN Security Council pertaining to the prolongation of the peacemaking mandate in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The US government claimed that the Security Council had not provided the USA and its peacemakers with immunity from possible political persecution on the part of the International Criminal Court. Americans threatened that they would leave the Balkans if they were not given the requisite guarantee. Well, it could be a very good action of the new international structure if the court could say “go!”

However, based on the list of opponents of the International Criminal Court, one may come to conclusion that the court is something like a perspective idea rather than something more definite, especially on the global scale. In addition, according to constituent documents, the court can consider only those crimes that were committed only after the date of its official opening, i.e. from July 1. The court may start working on a case if a state (that is involved in that case) ratified the Roman statute. If not, then not.

Sergey Yugov PRAVDA.Ru

Translated by Dmitry Sudakov

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