July 1, in the Hague, the International Criminal Court starts its work, founded in Rome, in early April. The agreement about the ICC foundation was ratified by 66 countries (while 139 countries signed it without ratifying). Russia still has not taken a final decision: the Russian Federation joined the convention about the ICC creation in 2000, though it does not hasten to ratify it. The judges will be elected by the ICC Assembly, the supreme body of the court. There will be also investigation staff formed on international base, which will consist of preliminary execution department, appeal department, public prosecutor’s office and secretariat. Office work will be carried out in English and French. In the meanwhile, the US officially said that it would no way participate in the court’s work. The court is being created by the world community to investigate military crimes, so there is many things to remember committed by the US: bombardments of Yugoslavia, war in Persian Gulf etc. The US is said to be concerned with US citizens to be accused of military crimes and to appear before the International Trial (however, it is hardly probable, taking into account the today’s situation in the world). The head of Military Crime Court of US Department of State, Pierre Prosper intends to officially inform the UN about the US’ refuse to ratify the Rome statute about the ICC foundation. Washington is no long restricted with obligations in the framework of this document, however the Department of State’s spokesman promised that persons accused or sentenced by the ICC would not find an asylum on US soil. It should be reminded that initially, December 2000, Bill Clinton’s administration signed the document passed in 1998 and predicting creation of a court, which would consider cases connected with genocide, military crimes and crimes against humanity. Therefore, today’s US officials disavowed the previous administration’s decision. As for Russia, it participated in working out the statute of the ICC, however the question about its participation in the work of the court is still open. While speaking about aims of the ICC, professor Alexei Avtonomov, a department’s leader of Russian Academy of Science’s State and Law Institute, said in his interview to Vek weekly, that the court is “being created to punish concrete persons, so there will be no immunity either for deputies, or for presidents. Real life shows that personal responsibility of a person is much more effective, than some sanctions against the whole state. At the same time, the court will protect rights not only of the victims, but of the defendants as well, after all there are cases when an innocent person is accused…” Though, it is obvious that if the question is about global notions, like genocide, crimes against humanity, politicising is inevitable. If even the question is about a serious international structure. Today’s world policy, especially that one of the leading western powers, cannot be impartial. Powers that be, countries of “golden billion,” trans-national corporation, adepts of the “new world order” rule in the world. PACE, which seems to be versatile as for views and members, constantly criticezes Russia for its violation of human rights in Chechnya and passes proper resolutions. The PACE resolutions, happily, do not oblige us to anything. Though the ICC is another thing. The International Criminal Court could institute criminal proceedings. Ex-Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic has already experienced “impartiality” of the International Tribunal which turned into a banal politician tribunal. Apropos, the convention about the ICC creation was not signed by India and China, as well as by both Koreas, Vietnam, Egypt, Jordan, Algeria, Morocco, United Arab Emirates. Sergei Yugov PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Vera Solovieva
Read the original in Russian: http://pravda.ru/main/2002/05/07/40760.html
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