News

News

June 12, 2020

Statement of ABA President Judy Perry Martinez re: U.S. Sanctions of International Criminal Court Personnel

Washington, D.C., Friday, June 12, 2020 - The American Bar Association expressed deep concern today over recently announced US policy authorizing sanctions on the International Criminal Court, its staff, and others. 

On Thursday, June 11, 2020, Secretary of State Pompeo, joined by several other administration officials, announced that the Trump administration was “authorizing the imposition of economic sanctions against ICC officials directly engaged in the ICC efforts to investigate U.S. personnel or allied personnel against that allied state’s consent, and against others who materially support such officials’ activities,” as well as “expanding visa restrictions for officials directly engaged in those same investigations,” including their family members. The potential sanctions are detailed in Executive Order 13928.

In a statement, ABA President Judy Perry Martinez recalled the ABA’s long support for the Court and renewed the ABA’s “longstanding call that the U.S. conduct and complete its own thorough investigation and prosecution of any atrocity crimes committed by U.S. officials and personnel and, in so doing, exercise U.S. sovereignty.” The ICC is a court of last resort, and only has jurisdiction where states themselves are unwilling or unable to prosecute the crimes the ICC is investigating. The ICC is currently investigating atrocity crimes committed on the territory of Afghanistan, an ICC State Party, which include crimes allegedly committed by the Taliban as well as crimes allegedly committed by Afghan national forces and US armed forces and CIA personnel. Allegations against US personnel are focused on alleged torture and detainee abuse.

“As Secretary Pompeo has acknowledged,” President Martinez noted, “the U.S. is able to conduct its own investigations of such actions which, if carried out, would effectively eliminate ICC jurisdiction. But to date the U.S. has not done so.”

Around the world, other bar associationsand groups of civil society organizations, lawyersStates Parties, and UN experts also expressed similar concern about the policies. 

Read the ABA’s full statement here.

The American Bar Association’s (ABA) International Criminal Court (ICC) Project is an independent initiative of the ABA Center for Human Rights and Criminal Justice Section that advances international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. For more information about the ABA’s ICC Project, please visit its website.

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April 17, 2020

Criminal Justice Section Submits Comments to Independent Expert Review of the International Criminal Court

Washington, DC - The American Bar Association’s Criminal Justice Section (CJS) recently submitted detailed comments to the Independent Expert Review of the International Criminal Court. The submission was written in conjunction with the ABA’s Center for Human Rights (CHR) and the International Criminal Court Project, which is jointly supported by CHR and CJS. Comments relied on the expertise of the International Criminal Court Project’s board of advisors and preliminary discussions of the International Criminal Justice Standards Project.

Stakeholders have for some time encouraged an independent review of the Court, an idea that has gained traction through calls by civil society organizations and former and current Court leadership. In December 2019, the ICC Assembly of States Parties authorized a review of the Court to “identify and implement measures to strengthen the Court and improve its performance,” grounded in the Rome Statute’s key principles of “complementarity, integrity and judicial and prosecutorial independence” and involving all relevant stakeholders, including civil society, States Parties, and the Court itself. As part of this process, the Assembly commissioned a group of independent experts to “mak[e] concrete, achievable and actionable recommendations aimed at enhancing the performance, efficiency and effectiveness of the Court and the Rome Statute system.”

The Group of Independent Experts is expected to issue a report with recommendations this fall. The Assembly of States Parties also has charged itself with examining certain topics as part of the review, such as operational performance, cooperation, and the relationship between national jurisdictions and the Court.

The American Bar Association has long supported the International Criminal Court’s existence, independence and essential role in the global system of international justice, most directly through the work of the International Criminal Court Project. The submission focused in particular on the need for investment in professional development, clarifying essential trial procedures, and the impact of judicial management on trial efficiency and predictability. It also encouraged the ICC and Trust Fund for Victims to explore innovative funding mechanisms to increase their long-term sustainability and impact on victims of atrocity crimes.

 

Read the cover letter and full submission here.

 


The International Criminal Court (ICC) Project is part of the Atrocity Crimes Initiative, which is jointly supported by the ABA’s Center for Human Rights and Criminal Justice Section. The International Criminal Court Project advances international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. More information about the ICC Project can be found at its website.

» Permanent Link to the full report

December 3, 2019

ABA Supports Efforts to Strengthen ICC at Assembly of States Parties

The Hague, The Netherlands, Dec. 3, 2019: On the occasion of the 18th Session of the Assembly of States Parties (ASP) to the International Criminal Court (ICC), the American Bar Association (ABA) reaffirmed its support for the International Criminal Court as the cornerstone of a global system of justice for atrocity crimes. 

In a written statement submitted on behalf of the ABA, Past President of the ABA and Chair of the ICC Project Michael S. Greco noted that the envisioned court-wide review of the ICC aimed at strengthening the Court’s procedures and effectiveness, which will be discussed throughout this Assembly, is a opportunity to address the Court’s challenges. Greco encouraged States Parties and independent experts (a group of which is expected to be authorized to address certain topics as part of a review) to engage diverse voices and to involve Court officials/staff and civil society, who have unique perspectives on the Court’s challenges and potential solutions. Elsewhere during the ASP, the ICC Project co-hosted a side event highlighting on the unique perspectives that victims, affected communities, and civil society organizations can contribute to this process.

“This initiative has the potential to have a lasting impact on the Court’s history, but its impact will depend on the support and openness of all involved, including the Assembly of States Parties, Court leadership, experts and civil society. We must all be accountable for staying true to the ICC’s purposes and guiding principles while also questioning where it has fallen short and can do better to fulfill them.” - Michael S. Greco

Greco also stressed the continued need for all stakeholders to protect the independence of the Court’s legal professionals and its casework, including from political interference.

Read the full statement here.

 

The International Criminal Court (ICC) Project, jointly supported by the ABA’s Center for Human Rights and Criminal Justice Section, seeks to advance international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. For more information about the ABA’s ICC Project, please visit its website.

» Permanent Link to the full report

August 13, 2019

ABA Urges United States and Other Governments to Respond to Crimes Committed Against the Rohingya

San Francisco, CA - At the 2019 American Bar Association (ABA) Annual Meeting in San Francisco, the ABA House of Delegates passed a policy resolution urging the United States and other governments to respond to crimes committed against the Rohingya population in Burma/Myanmar. The resolution was submitted by the ABA Section of International Law. Specifically, the resolution urged that certain U.S. government officials make a public determination on crimes committed against the Rohingya, impose targeted sanctions against Burmese/Myanmar military leaders, and pressure the Burma/Myanmar government to allow access for humanitarian aid in Rakhine State and end serious human rights violations against minorities in Myanmar.

The resolution also called upon the United Nations Security Council (and urging US support) to refer the situation to the International Criminal Court. Various UN fact-finding and investigative bodies, in addition to many civil society organizations, have documented alleged genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes committed against the Rohingya. The International Criminal Court Prosecutor has opened an investigation into certain crimes committed against the Rohingya, but the Court only has limited jurisdiction over crimes where at least part of the crime occurred in Bangladesh (an ICC state party) since Myanmar is not a state party.

Lastly, the resolution encouraged the United States and other countries to engage with the Bangladesh government to remove barriers to efficient humanitarian assistance and to ensure that future repatriation is safe and voluntary, mindful of necessary human rights protections.

The full resolution and its accompanying report can be found on the ABA’s House of Delegates website.

 

The International Criminal Court (ICC) Project, jointly supported by the ABA’s Center for Human Rights and Criminal Justice Section, seeks to advance international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. For more information about the ABA’s ICC Project, please visit its website.

 

 

» Permanent Link to the full report

April 8, 2019

Statement of ABA President Bob Carlson Re: Restricting International Criminal Court Officials’ Visas

Washington, D.C., Monday, April 8, 2019 - The American Bar Association expressed concern today over recently announced US policy to restrict visas for certain officials of the International Criminal Court.

On Friday, March 15, 2019, Secretary of State Pompeo announced that the United States would restrict visas for “individuals directly responsible for any ICC investigation of U.S. personnel,” including “persons who take or have taken action to request or further such an investigation.” The administration also indicated that it may use visa restrictions “to deter ICC efforts to pursue allied personnel,” and that it may employ additional measures such as economic sanctions for those purposes in the future. The ICC confirmed in April that the United States had indeed revoked the visa of the Court’s Chief Prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda. These policies follow earlier statements regarding the Court made by administration officials in September 2018.

In a statement, ABA President Bob Carlson recalled the ABA’s long support for the Court and greater US engagement with it. He noted that the Court’s existence has “strengthened the expectation of justice held by victims and states alike.” 

“In the United States, the independence and impartiality of our justice system is foundational to our democracy and commitment to the rule of law,” Carlson said. “Although the United States is not a member of the ICC, barring the travel of legal professionals because of their work on behalf of this international tribunal sends the wrong message about the United States’ commitment to those same principles in the pursuit of international justice and accountability.

The ABA urges the State Department to immediately reverse this policy decision and to refrain from taking actions against legal professionals based solely on their work on behalf of the ICC.”

Around the world, States Parties and other civil society organizations also expressed similar concern about the policies. 

Read the ABA’s full statement here.

The American Bar Association’s (ABA) International Criminal Court (ICC) Project is an independent initiative of the ABA Center for Human Rights and Criminal Justice Section that advances international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. For more information about the ABA’s ICC Project, please visit its website.

» Permanent Link to the full report

January 18, 2019

Statement on the Passing of the Hon. Patricia M. Wald

The ABA’s ICC Project remembers the Hon. Patricia M. Wald’s immeasurable contributions to international law and the legal profession.

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December 7, 2018

ABA Reaffirms Strong Support for the ICC Before the Assembly of States Parties

The Hague, The Netherlands, Dec. 7, 2018: Before the 17th Session of the Assembly of States Parties (ASP) of the International Criminal Court (ICC), the American Bar Association (ABA) reaffirmed its support for the International Criminal Court and the Court’s mandate to investigate and prosecute (where warranted) those responsible for international atrocity crimes. The International Criminal Court has jurisdiction over war crimes, crimes against humanity, genocide and the crime of aggression.

Addressing the Assembly on behalf of the ABA, Past President of the ABA and Chair of the ABA’s ICC Project Michael S. Greco recalled the ABA’s longstanding support for the ICC through policy positions advocating for the Court’s creation, and later for greater U.S. engagement and cooperation with the Court and its activities. He acknowledged the ICC’s centrality to international justice efforts and international peace and security, noting that “the fight to end impunity for atrocity crimes begins with support for the ICC.”

Greco also stressed the role of States and civil society in protecting the Court from political interference, and the necessity of adequate resources needed for the Court to continue its pursuit of international criminal justice.

“It is in the context of the ABA’s longstanding and unwavering commitment to the ICC that we join others in urging the Assembly of States Parties and international civil society to redouble their commitment to the ICC as well. The Court is needed now more than ever.” - Michael S. Greco

Read the full statement here.

2018 ABA Statement before t... by on Scribd

ABA Statements from past ASP meetings can be found here and here.

 

The American Bar Association’s (ABA) International Criminal Court (ICC) Project is an independent initiative of the ABA Center for Human Rights and Criminal Justice Section that advances international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. For more information about the ABA’s ICC Project, please visit its website.

» Permanent Link to the full report

December 6, 2018

Side Event at ICC’s 17th Assembly of States Parties Examines ICC’s Upcoming Challenges and Possibilities for Advancing Accountability

The Hague, The Netherlands, Dec. 6, 2018: In cooperation with the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH), the ABA’s ICC Project and Criminal Justice Section organized a side event during the 17th Session of the Assembly of States Parties of the International Criminal Court. Convening a group of distinguished experts with experience in US policymaking, human rights investigation and international criminal accountability advocacy, the discussion centered on challenges and opportunities for increased accountability presented by the International Criminal Court’s recent preliminary examinations and investigations. Experts highlighted past U.S. cooperation with the Court and emphasized the legal profession and civil society’s role in advancing accountability for atrocity crimes. They also compared accountability initiatives attempted by the international community and civil society beyond the ICC for alleged conduct in Afghanistan, Myanmar, and other countries through universal jurisdiction and UN-mandated investigations, as well as the challenges present in seeking accountability for these alleged crimes before the ICC.

To view the event recap, click here.

The American Bar Association’s (ABA) International Criminal Court (ICC) Project is an independent initiative of the ABA Center for Human Rights that advances international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. More information about the ABA’s ICC Project can be found at its website.

» Permanent Link to the full report

July 5, 2018

20 Years of the International Criminal Court - An Assessment

Please join us for a Capitol Hill panel briefing to celebrate International Criminal Justice Day and to discuss 20 years of the International Criminal Court.

» Permanent Link to the full report

December 11, 2017

ABA Emphasizes the ICC’s Progress and Potential in Ending Impunity and Preventing Mass Atrocities Before the Assembly of States Parties

United Nations, New York, Dec. 2017: The American Bar Association (ABA) emphasized the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) role as a “bulwark against impunity” for perpetrators of mass atrocities before the 16th Session of the Assembly of States Parties of the International Criminal Court in New York.

Delivered by ABA’s ICC Project Board Member Christopher “Kip” Hale, the ABA’s statement emphasized the need for States Parties’ continued commitment to the ICC through political, financial, procedural, and other support, and underscored States’ role in empowering the Court to fight against impunity for atrocity crimes. This support was necessary, Hale said, in “mak[ing] achieving justice feasible; securing a durable peace, possible; and, by extension, making deterrence more likely.” With 2018 marking the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the 20th anniversary of the Rome Statute, Hale recalled the importance of accountability, prevention, and equality in the pursuit of international justice.

Read the full statement here.

ABA Statement before the 16… by on Scribd

ABA statements from past ASP meetings can be found here.

The American Bar Association’s (ABA) International Criminal Court (ICC) Project is an independent initiative of the ABA Center for Human Rights that advances international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. For more information about the ABA’s ICC Project, please visit its website.

» Permanent Link to the full report

September 27, 2017

Statement on the Passing of Professor M. Cherif Bassiouni

A founding member of the ABA’s ICC Project Board of Advisors, Prof. Bassiouni’s positive impact on the field of international criminal law is immeasurable.

» Permanent Link to the full report

August 15, 2017

ABA Urges US Congress and State Department to Preserve and Bolster the Office of Global Criminal Justice and Ambassador at-Large Post

Washington, D.C. - At the 2017 American Bar Association (ABA) Annual Meeting held in New York City, the ABA House of Delegates unanimously passed a policy resolution urging the United States Congress and the Department of State to continue American commitment and support for criminal accountability for mass atrocities. Specifically, this ABA policy position urged not only for the continuation of the US State Department’s Office of Global Criminal Justice and its Ambassador at-Large post, but an increase in support for its critically important work helping global efforts to end impunity for the atrocity crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes.

The ABA took this policy position in response to recent news that the Donald J. Trump Administration is currently exploring whether to reduce or eliminate this State Department office and Ambassador at-Large position, and doing so without an alternative plan on how the US would continue to promote its interests and leadership in holding criminally accountable individuals who participate in mass atrocities around the world.

Emphasizing the importance of showing the American legal community’s support for international criminal justice, former ABA President and Chair of the ABA’s International Criminal Court Project, Michael S. Greco, introduced this policy resolution before the ABA House of Delegates. Speaking in support of the resolution was former US Ambassador at-Large for War Crimes Issues, Stephen J. Rapp, and member of the ABA’s ICC Project Board of Advisors, and former senior legal advisor to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), Colonel James S. Durant III

(VIDEO OF ALL THREE REMARKS CAN BE FOUND HERE).

Acknowledging that “the promise of ‘never again’ has been hard to keep”, Ambassador Rapp stated that this unfortunate reality does not diminish the importance of the rule of law to deterring atrocity crimes. Ambassador Rapp further stressed that the State Department Office of Global Criminal Justice and its Ambassador at-Large are integral to ensuring that international criminal tribunals are appropriately resourced, receive US cooperation with atrocity crimes investigations and prosecutions, and are staffed by competent prosecutors, judges, and lawyers. He concluded by stating how important it is to the policy discussion in Washington, D.C. and to global efforts to investigate and prosecute atrocity crimes that the collective voice of American lawyers be heard.

Speaking after Ambassador Rapp was ABA Delegate Colonel Durant III who spoke intimately about how crucial the Office of Global Criminal Justice was to NATO missions to apprehend indicted atrocity criminals in the former Yugoslavia and transfer them to The Hague, The Netherlands. Noting the pride felt by him and his fellow servicemembers in supporting international criminal justice proceedings, Colonel Durant made clear that the Ambassador at-Large and Office of Global Criminal Justice was vital to the formation and implementation of strong US policy on atrocity crimes and, therefore, the office and Ambassador post must “of course” continue.

The approximately fifteen minute-long video of the remarks by Michael Greco, Ambassador Stephen Rapp, and Colonel James Durant III can be found at this link.

The ABA policy resolution and its accompany report discussing reasons to preserve and bolster the State Department Office of Global Criminal Justice and its Ambassador at-Large post (as well as the range of US national interests promoted by American support of global efforts to investigate and prosecute those who participate atrocity crimes) can be found at this link.

The American Bar Association’s (ABA) International Criminal Court Project is an independent initiative of the ABA Center for Human Rights that advances international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. More information about the ABA’s ICC Project can be found at its website.

» Permanent Link to the full report

July 17, 2017

ABA’s ICC Project/Ipsos Poll Shows Continued Growth in American Support for the ICC and its Work

Polling also shows most Americans believe both military might and criminal cases are most effective way to combat terrorism

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April 7, 2017

International Criminal Law in a Retreating World

Please join us for this event on Thursday, April 13 in Washington, D.C. with Madame Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Fatou Bensouda, and other speakers.

» Permanent Link to the full report

August 1, 2016

ABA’s ICC Project/Ipsos Poll Shows Greater American Acceptance of the ICC and Support for ICC Investigation in Afghanistan

American understanding and support for the ICC continues to grow. Also, Americans are surprisingly supportive of an ICC investigation in Afghanistan regardless who may be investigated.

» Permanent Link to the full report

July 26, 2016

ABA’s ICC Project/Ipsos Poll Finds Support for Increased Assistance to the ICC

Polling shows improved awareness of the International Criminal Court (ICC), driven by awareness among youth.

Washington, D.C., July 26, 2016 – The American Bar Associations’ (ABA) ICC Project today released the results of its most recent polling on Americans’ opinions on the ICC and related current events. Done in partnership with Ipsos Public Affairs, the polling results show a positive trend in Americans knowledge of the ICC, which is now at the highest it has been since this tracking began, at 45%, a 6-point increase from the last survey in April 2016. The polling also shows an increase in support for the ICC, with more than four in ten (44%) Americans supporting increased US involvement or fully joining the ICC, while less than half of that number (21%) think the US should not join the ICC.


Following the U.S. House of Representatives’ unanimous vote that Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) has committed genocide and other atrocity crimes against religious and ethnic minorities in Syria and Iraq, this quarterly polling also asked Americans for their opinions on U.S. involvement in ICC prosecution of these crimes. On this matter, nearly half (49%) of Americans agree that “the US government should push diplomatically and politically for the ICC to get involved in investigating and prosecuting these crimes in Syria and Iraq,” while only 21% deem that “it is not the US government’s job to get involved in investigating and prosecuting theses crimes in Syria and Iraq.” Additionally, more than half of American support providing assistance, including financial assistance, to the ICC for the investigation and prosecution of these crimes.

For more information on the most recent ABA’s ICC Project/Ipsos poll, please visit the polling report.


The American Bar Association’s (ABA) International Criminal Court (ICC) Project is an independent initiative of the ABA Center for Human Rights that advances international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. More information about the ABA’s ICC Project can be found at its website.

» Permanent Link to the full report

July 15, 2016

Statement of ABA President Paulette Brown on International Criminal Justice Day – July 17, 2016

ABA President Paulette Brown’s statement on International Criminal Justice Day recognizes successes and challenges in atrocity accountability.

Washington D.C., July 14, 2016 - In recognition of International Criminal Justice Day that occurs Sunday July 17, American Bar Association (ABA) President Paulette Brown acknowledged the successes of global efforts to combat the atrocity crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes, and the need for more work to be done to achieve justice for other victims and end impunity wherever it exists.

On behalf of the ABA, President Brown’s statement made specific mention of achievements in international criminal justice that occurred this past year. Notable successes include the convictions of a high-ranking Bosnian Serb, a senior Congolese politician, and the former president of Chad, all for horrid atrocity crimes. While the successes are to be commended, President Brown also stated that significant challenges remain in achieving accountability for atrocities committed elsewhere. “Much more remains to be done. Atrocity crimes happen in many places around the world and at home, and the law mandates that there be accountability in all instances.  Certain states with legal obligations to the [International Criminal Court] fail to cooperate and assist the Court fully in their investigation, apprehension, and prosecution of suspects and accused individuals.  As a result, not only is justice for the victims of these horrific crimes evaded, but impunity also becomes more entrenched; atrocity crimes may become more attractive as a means to attain, retain, or increase governmental power; and durable peace and security under a just rule of law drifts farther out of reach.”

Looking forward, the ABA President noted ways for the United States to help achieve greater accountability for the perpetrators of atrocity crimes and increased justice for victims. Specifically, President Brown renewed previous ABA’s calls on the United States to enhance its support of the International Criminal Court, to accede to the Rome Statute, and to enact federal crimes against humanity legislation.

To read the full statement, please visit the following link.

#JusticeMatters #17July

The American Bar Association’s (ABA) International Criminal Court (ICC) Project is an independent initiative of the ABA Center for Human Rights that advances international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. More information about the ABA’s ICC Project can be found at its website.

» Permanent Link to the full report

June 22, 2016

ABA’s ICC Project & Stanford Law release latest online roundtable, Arguendo, on the protection of cultural property and accountability

The ABA’s ICC Project releases its most recent Arguendo, addressing the significance of ICC prosecution of cultural destruction in Mali.

Washington D.C., June 22, 2016 - The American Bar Association’s International Criminal Court (ICC) Project and Stanford Law School Program in International and Comparative Law are pleased to announce the release of their latest online roundtable, Arguendo, with an eminent panel of experts discussing the significance of the ICC’s war crime charges of attacks on cultural property in Mali. The ICC’s case against extremist Mr. Ahmad al-Faqi al-Mahdi for alleged attacks on the World Heritage site of Timbuktu in Mali and other artifacts of cultural heritage is a milestone for the Court: the first trial to focus on alleged cultural destruction, as well as the first case to include a guilty plea, as Mr. al-Mahdi will reportedly enter in the near future.


To discuss this emerging facet of international criminal justice, this Arguendo roundtable features contributions from six distinguished experts: ‪‎UNESCO Director-General, Irina Bokova; former ‎US Ambassador to the Netherlands and Georgetown Diplomacy Professor, Honorable Cynthia Schneider; former Prime Minister of Australia and President of Asia Society Policy Institute, Honorable Kevin Rudd; His Royal Highness Prince El Hassan bin Talal of Jordan; and Sam Sasan Shoamanesh and Gilles Dutertre of the ICC Office of the Prosecutor.

In her article, Director-General Bokova discusses the legal validity of prosecuting cultural destruction as a war crime and the resulting collaboration between UNESCO and the ICC. Ambassador Schneider explores the importance of protecting the unique identity of Timbuktu through the restoration of cultural heritage. Prime Minister Rudd argues for the need to increase coordination and collaboration between international actors, including states, law enforcement, and museums, in the fight to protect global culture and history. His Royal Highness Prince Bin Talal emphasizes the role that cultural appreciation has in fostering inclusive dialogue. Senior Special Assistant to the Prosecutor Sam Sasan Shoamanesh and Senior Trial Attorney Gilles Dutertre stress the importance of accountability mechanisms, in particular, the ICC to the protection of cultural property.

We encourage you to visit this latest Arguendo, and please comment with your ideas and responses.

The American Bar Association’s (ABA) International Criminal Court (ICC) Project is an independent initiative of the ABA Center for Human Rights that advances international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. More information about the ABA’s ICC Project can be found at itswebsite.

» Permanent Link to the full report

June 8, 2016

ABA’s ICC Project/Ipsos Poll Shows Support for Resources to the ICC

New poll finds Americans are supportive of dedicating resources to the ICC and their work to combat rape as a war crime.

Washington, D.C., June 8, 2016 – In anticipation of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) upcoming briefing before the United Nations Security Council on the situation in Darfur/Sudan, the American Bar Associations’ (ABA) ICC Project today released the results of its most recent polling on Americans’ opinions on the ICC and recent related events. Done in partnership with Ipsos Public Affairs, the results show a continued positive trend in American support for the ICC, including a 5% increase from the November 2015 polling data that the United States government should dedicate financial, military, intelligence, and other resources to the ICC. In addition, a clear majority of Americans (68%) support the Court’s principles, agreeing that “it is important for the United States to participate in international organizations that support human rights and that hold individuals accountable for mass atrocities.”

This quarterly polling also asked Americans for their opinions on rape and sexual violence as a war crime, and related issues. Specifically, Americans were asked for their opinions on the ICC’s trial against former Congolese Vice President Jean-Pierre Bemba, which marked the ICC’s first conviction for sexual assault and rape as a war crime and first conviction of a superior for crimes committed by their subordinates. Furthermore, opinions were asked about the all-female judicial panel that handed down the conviction of Mr. Bemba. A supermajority of Americans agree that the ICC should be able to hold leaders accountable for failing to punish the criminal behavior (including sexual and gender-based crimes)  of their subordinates (77%). Furthermore, over half of the US public believes that the ICC is a good example of female empowerment and a similar number believes that the United States should support the ICC because it is aligned with American values.

For more information on the most recent ABA’s ICC Project/Ipsos poll, please visit the polling report.


The American Bar Association’s (ABA) International Criminal Court (ICC) Project is an independent initiative of the ABA Center for Human Rights that advances international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. More information about the ABA’s ICC Project can be found at its website.

» Permanent Link to the full report

February 25, 2016

Harvard Law Professor and Former ICC Prosecutions Coordinator, Alex Whiting, Joins the ABA’s ICC Project Board of Advisors

The ABA’s ICC Project welcomes Professor Alex Whiting to its Board of Advisors.

Washington D.C., Feb. 25, 2016 - The American Bar Association (ABA) Center for Human Rights is pleased to announce that Professor Alex Whiting, Professor of Practice at Harvard Law School and former Prosecutions Coordinator at the International Criminal Court (ICC), has joined the Board of Advisors of the ABA’s ICC Project.

Former ABA President Michael S. Greco, Chair of the ABA Center for Human Rights, welcomed Prof. Whiting to the Board and said, “Prof. Whiting brings to the Project’s Board of Advisors innovative thinking, extensive practical experience, sound judgment and a long held commitment to international criminal justice. He will enhance significantly our ability to achieve the Project’s mandate, particularly as it relates to greater cooperation between the US and the ICC.”

Prior to teaching at Harvard Law School, Prof. Whiting oversaw prosecutions at the ICC in The Hague, The Netherlands from 2012 to 2013. He also served as Investigations Coordinator at the ICC from 2010 to 2012. With these experiences, Prof. Whiting is the highest-ranking American to have served at the Court. He joined the ICC as an experienced practitioner of international criminal law having served as a Trial Attorney and then a Senior Trial Attorney at the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia (ICTY) in The Hague from 2002 to 2007. He was lead prosecution counsel in Prosecutor v. Fatmir Limaj, Isak Musliu, and Haradin Bala, Prosecutor v. Milan Martić, and Prosecutor v. Dragomir Miloševic.

Prof. Whiting also has extensive domestic criminal experience as a U.S. federal prosecutor for ten years, first with the Criminal Section of the Civil Rights Division in Washington, D.C., and then with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Boston. From 2007 to 2010, Prof. Whiting taught at Harvard Law School as Assistance Clinical Professor of Law. He has written extensively on international criminal justice as an academic and commentator, including as a contributor and editor of Just Security.

Prof. Whiting attended Yale College and Yale Law School, and clerked for Judge Eugene H. Nickerson of the Federal District Court for the Eastern District of New York.

The American Bar Association’s (ABA) International Criminal Court (ICC) Project is an independent initiative of the ABA Center for Human Rights that advances international criminal justice and US-ICC relations through advocacy, education and practical legal assistance. More information about the ABA’s ICC Project can be found at its website.

» Permanent Link to the full report