Celebrating 25 Years of Scoop
Special: Up To 25% Off Scoop Pro Learn More

World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


World News in Brief: ICC slams ‘unacceptable threats’, DR Congo displacement, UNEP ‘Champions of the Earth’

The President of the International Criminal Court (ICC) on Monday hit back at Russia’s recent decision to issue arrest warrants against senior judges, describing the move as the most notable example of “unacceptable threats and attacks” on the international judicial body.

ICC President Piotr Hofmański was presenting the independent court’s annual report to the UN in New York. The ICC was established in July 2002 under a treaty known as the Rome Statute and is based in The Hague, in the Netherlands.

Mr. Hofmański noted that he himself, along with Prosecutor Karim Khan was on the list, which includes six judges of the court.

‘Unprecedented attack’

“This is an unprecedented attack on the judicial independence at the international level”, he said, noting that in investigation allegations of serious crimes and issuing arrest warrants for the Russian President and his Commissioner for Children’s Rights, the court was acting fully within its mandate.

Mr. Hofmański said he was “very appreciative of the strong support we have received” from States Parties to the court, and others.

“Ukraine has made a declaration under article 12 of the Rome Statute, accepting the ICC’s jurisdiction. Therefore, in accordance with the Statute, the ICC has jurisdiction over alleged crimes committed in Ukraine regardless of who the alleged perpetrators are, and what their nationality is.”

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading

Are you getting our free newsletter?

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.

Russia is not a party to the Rome Statute and the consent of any country facing allegations of serious crimes is not required, he stressed. Neither is there any immunity from prosecution based on political seniority.

“The Judges and the Prosecutor of the ICC are simply carrying out their mandate as elected officials of an international court with 123 States Parties. I find it unacceptable that my colleagues and I should be subjected to intimidation for that reason”.

He added he was “gravely concerned by a recent cyber-attack” which took place targeting the court’s information systems.

DR Congo displacement nears 7 million, warns UN migration agency

In the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), the number of internally displaced has reached a record 6.9 million amid escalating conflict, with humanitarian needs soaring, the UN migration agency (IOM) said on Monday.

IOM stressed that the DRC is facing “one of the largest” internal displacement and humanitarian crises in the world and that the most recent escalation of the conflict has “uprooted more people in less time, like rarely seen before”.

Four in every five internally displaced persons live in the eastern provinces of North Kivu, South Kivu, Ituri, and Tanganyika. In North Kivu alone, up to one million people have been displaced due to the ongoing conflict with the rebel group M23.

The UN migration agency said that teams have been actively involved in managing 78 displacement sites hosting over 280,000 people, providing residents with essential supplies, water, sanitation and hygiene assistance as well as psychosocial support.

The agency aims to support an additional 50,000 people in the next three months but its operations in the DRC remain underfunded by more than 50 per cent.

UNEP announces 2023 Champions of the Earth

The UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has unveiled this year’s Champions of the Earth. Honourees include a city mayor, a major non-profit, a social enterprise and a research council for innovative solutions produced to beat plastic pollution.

Since its inception in 2005 the annual Champions of the Earth award has been given to trailblazers at the forefront of efforts to protect both communities and the planet.

It is the UN’s highest environmental honour. UNEP received a record 2,500 nominations this cycle.

“Plastic pollution is a deeply concerning strand of the triple planetary crisis”, said Executive Director Inger Anderson.

“For the sake of our health and planet, we must end plastic pollution. This will take nothing less than a complete transformation to reduce the amount of plastics produced and eliminate single use plastics”.

She added that reuse systems have to be put in place and alternatives “that avoid the negative environmental and social impacts”.

“As negotiations to develop an international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution progress”, she added, “this year’s Champions of the Earth demonstrate that innovative solutions are available that can inspire us to rethink our relationship with plastic.”

© Scoop Media

Advertisement - scroll to continue reading
World Headlines


Join Our Free Newsletter

Subscribe to Scoop’s 'The Catch Up' our free weekly newsletter sent to your inbox every Monday with stories from across our network.