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CICC Update: Letter from William Pace

May 29, 2003

Greetings from the NGO Coalition for the International Criminal Court. I write as Coalition Convenor to inform you of some of the key developments we expect in the coming months.

At the 1998 Rome conference in which the statute creating the International Criminal Court (ICC) was adopted, few believed that within five short years the world's first permanent tribunal capable of trying individuals accused of genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity - regardless of the accused's position or power - would be almost fully operational. Yet as we approach the July 17 five year anniversary of the adoption of the Rome Statute, already the court has 139 signatories and 90 States Parties to its treaty, a provisional seat in the Netherlands, a first bench of 18 highly qualified judges, and a prosecutor with significant relevant experience.

The success in creating this new tool of peace and justice has required enormous political effort and has overcome serious opposition. During the next two months a number of significant events impacting the court's development are expected to take place. On June 16 the first chief prosecutor, Mr. Luis Moreno Ocampo of Argentina, will be sworn in in The Hague, where the ICC is based. It is also expected that during a June plenary meeting of the 18 judges, the election of the Registrar will complete the selection of the leading officers of this new international organization.

On July 1 the U.S.-initiated UN Security Council resolution 1422, which requests that the ICC not proceed with the investigation or prosecution of U.S. and other UN peacekeepers from non-states parties to the ICC treaty for a 12 month period, will be up for renewal. Also occurring on July 1 is the "deadline" set out in the U.S. "American Servicemembers Protection Act", by which countries must sign bilateral ICC immunity agreements with the U.S. or face the potential loss of U.S. military assistance.

I would welcome the opportunity to speak with you about these above issues, and urge you to contact Ms. Adele Waugaman, CICC Media Liaison, (telephone: + 1-212-687-2863 ext. 17; e-mail: for further information. Please also visit our web site at for new developments.

Sincere regards,

William R. Pace Convenor


Adele Waugaman :: Media Liaison Coalition for the International Criminal Court

777 UN Plaza, 3rd Floor, New York NY 10017 USA T: (+) 1.212.687.2863 ext. 17 :: F: (+) 1.212.599.1332 :: E:

Visit our online press room at ::

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