Tenth Session of the ICC Assembly of States Parties

New York, 12-21 December 2011

From 12 to 21 December 2011, the Assembly of States Parties (ASP) of the International Criminal Court (ICC) met in New York for its tenth annual session. The ASP was attended by States Parties, observer States, international organisations and non‑governmental organisations, including a delegation from No Peace Without Justice (NPWJ).
The 10th Assembly of States Parties of the International Criminal Court was led by a newly elected President, Ms Tiina Intelmann (Estonia), two new Vice-Presidents, Ken Kanda (Ghana) and Markus Borlin (Switzerland) and a new ASP Bureau. In addition to adopting the 2012 budget, the ASP also elected the new ICC Prosecutor, six judges and six members of the Committee on Budget and Finance (CBF), signing the beginning of a new cycle in the life of the Court.
As the Prosecutor elected of this second generation court, Ms Fatou Bensouda of the Gambia, who will be taking office in June 2012, will have new challenges in continuing to strengthen the ICC and its role in fighting impunity, promoting peace and –critically– securing redress for victims.
During this session, ICC States Parties reached a consensus decision on the Court’s 2012 budget, that applies further cuts to those recommended by the CBF.  Alongside its NGO colleagues, NPWJ is seriously concerned this could impede the Court in discharging its mandate to deliver meaningful justice that has a real impact for victims and affected communities. This is particularly critical this year, with two new situations, a demonstrable increase in judicial activity and a consequent increase in its general workload.

Notwithstanding these concerns, NPWJ welcomes the recognition by States of the importance of the Court’s strategic planning process on its field operations, which is critical to increase the effectiveness, efficacy and impact of the Court’s work. At the 10th Session of the ASP, ICC States Parties once again called for an enhanced field presence of the Court, in order to optimise the relevance and impact of the Court in countries where it carries out its work.
NPWJ stresses the necessity for the Court to continue enhancing its legacy in countries in which it operates, including through a completion strategy, in consultation with States Parties, civil society and other stakeholders. Strong support should be dedicated for outreach, public information and communications on the Court, encouraging the ICC to start outreach at the earliest possible opportunity, including during the preliminary examinations phase.
No Peace Without Justice, which is a founding member of the NGO Coalition for the International Criminal Court (CICC) and which has been one of the organisations at the forefront of promoting the establishment and entry into force of the permanent International Criminal Court (ICC) and continues to work for its universal ratification, has participated in every session of the ASP since its first session in 2002, the year the ICC was established.
For further information, contact Alison Smith on asmith@npwj.org or +32-2-548-3912 or Nicola Giovannini on ngiovannini@npwj.org or +32-2-548-3915