Security Council has to trigger the International Criminal Court on the situation in Darfur

While the Security Council at that time examines a new resolution on the situation in Darfur, the International Community must measure the international crimes already noted and the responsibilities highlighted to decide from now on of concrete actions aiming the judicial proceedings and condemnation of these acts and their perpetrators.

Indeed, the Security Council members debate on the draft resolution providing for the implementation of an International Investigating Committee which will go on the spot to determine if the crimes committed in the region can be described as genocide.

« For as much -Sidiki Kaba, President of the FIDH, considers-, violations are henceforth proved and the responsibilities known. Considering the emergency of the situation, it is necessary from now on that a court be submitted on this situation, in order to qualify in an independent and impartial way the violations, and to bring suit the perpetrators immediately. We call upon States members to the Security Council to draw the importance of their public qualifications submitting the International Criminal Court » he said.

Considering the extend of the crimes committed in the Darfur, the FIDH highlights that this is the rôle of a independent and impartial jurisdiction to particularize the crimes committed, to bring suit and judge the main perpetrators. Considering the Sudanese justice (see our report of May 2004 « One step forward, many steps backwards » and the implication of national authorities, the FIDH considers that it would be completely inappropriate and useless to hope that Sudanese national justice to validly meet justice requirement.

Consequently, the FIDH urges the members of the Security Council to submit the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) in compliance with the article 13 b) of the Statute of Rome in order that he initiates an investigation to inquire into crimes within its sphere of competence and to bring suit against the perpetrators.

The submission to the Prosecutor of the ICC by the Security Council would have not only a dissuasive effect as for the continuation of the most serious crimes in Darfur but would prove, beyond the declarations of intent, that the international community wants to meet its obligations working for the judicial proceedings and the judgement of the perpetrators of international crimes.

Brief background on the ICC jurisdiction

As reminder, the principle is that the International Criminal Court has jurisdiction to judge war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide committed since 1st July 2002 on the territory or by a national of a State party to its Statute. Therefore, the ICC has limited jurisdiction. Excepted when it is a submission of the ICC by the Security Council. Indeed, the Security Council can decide to submit the ICC on a crime within its sphere of the competence of the ICC even if the country where the crime was committed is a State party or not.

The fact that Sudan is not State party to the ICC is not an obstacle to the jurisdiction of the ICC provided that the Security Council decides so.

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