With Bangladesh joining ICC, Nepal urged to follow suit

With Bangladesh joining ICC, Nepal urged to follow suit



With the Bangladesh joining the Rome Statute of International Criminal Court (ICC) on Monday, human rights defenders in Nepal have started piling pressure to the government to follow the suit. With the ratification on Monday, Bangladesh has become the first country to join the ICC in South Asia and 111th State party to the Statute.


Though Nepal’s parliament ratified the Accession Bill on Rome Statute in 2006, the Cabinet’s indecision has been stopping Nepal from becoming the member of the ICC.


The ICC is the first international court established to try and prosecute the serious crimes, such as crimes against humanity, war crime, genocide and aggression categorized under international humanitarian laws.


The Court does not act retroactively as it has no jurisprudence to entertain cases which occurred before the concerned state party joined the treaty. Besides, ICC would act only when the entire judicial system of the concerned state party fails to address the case.


The rights defenders are urging the government to approve the bill because the approval would allow the upcoming ICC Review Meeting to welcome Nepal as a new state party to the ICC. The Review Meeting is slated for May this year.


In that line, INSEC on behalf of the National Coalition for the International Criminal Court (NCICC) in Nepal has hailed the Bangladesh’s ratification of Rome Statute of ICC and urged Nepal to accede to the treaty.


For a country like Nepal, which is passing through a difficult transition, joining ICC is considered crucial in that it functions as a deterrent for the future rulers to engage in human rights violations. Joining ICC would mean there would be no room for impunity for serious crimes like war crime, genocide, crimes against humanity and aggression.


Apprehensive of the fact that that greater support for the ICC in the Asian region is needed in order to increase the region’s commitment to fight against impunity, NCICC said Nepal should not delay in acceding to the treaty. “Applauding the move of the Government of Bangladesh, we would like to urge Government of Nepal to accede to the Statute without further delay,” said INSEC Chairman Subodh Pyakural on behalf of NCICC.


The NCICC said joining of this international justice system by Bangladesh would grant the region a stronger voice and a more meaningful role in supporting this truly effective mechanism for the protection of human rights and the rule of law.


With this ratification Bangladesh would also be able to participate in the upcoming Review Conference in May in Kampala, as a State Party -- a special meeting of the state party to review and consider amendments to the Rome Statute.

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