The Conference to review the Statute of the International Criminal Court opens today in Kampala, Uganda. Article 123 of the Statute mandates that a review be convened seven years after the entry into force of the Statute and that this review shall consider any amendments to the Statute include any amendments to the list of crimes subject to the jurisdiction of the Court. Much of the discussion in the review conference will focus on proposed amendments to the Statute which seek to define the crime of aggression and seek to set out the conditions under which the Court can exercise jurisdiction over the crime of aggression. On the latter point, much of the discussion will focus on the relationship between the ICC and the Security Council. For previous discussion on EJIL:Talk! on the proposals relating to aggression, see here, here and here. The review conference will also discuss other proposed amendments to the Statute, namely: a proposal to delete Article 124 of the Statute (on which see Bill Schabas) which is a transitional provision allowing a State to opt out for seven years from the provision dealing with war crimes; and another proposal to harmonise the provisions of Art. 8 dealing with prohibited weapons in international and non-international armed conflicts. There will also be an exercise in “stocktaking” of the progress of international criminal justice. The website of the review conference (available here) contains the relevant documents.
EJIL:Talk! is delighted to announce that Professors Joanna Harrington and Darryl Robinson will be providing reports and analysis from the Review Conference for readers of this blog. Both Professors Harrington and Robinson are attending the conference in Kampala and both of them have significant academic and practical experience of working on issues relating to the ICC. Professor Harrington is a previous contributor to the blog (see here) and is Professor of Law at the University of Alberta, Canada where she has recently been appointed as Associate Dean for the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research. From 2006 to 2008, she served as the Scholar-in-Residence with the Legal Affairs Bureau of the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade. In that role, she, among other things, provided advice on matters of international criminal law and practice and served as a member of Canada’s delegation to the United Nations General Assembly and the Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.
Professor Darryl Robinson is Assistant Professor of Law at Queen’s University in Canada. Prior to this he served as a Legal Officer at the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs from 1997-2004, where he provided legal advice and engaged in international negotiations concerning international human rights, humanitarian and criminal law. His work in the creation of the International Criminal Court and in the development of Canada’s new war crimes legislation earned him a Minister’s Citation and a Minister’s Award for Foreign Policy Excellence. From 2004 to 2006, he served as an adviser to the Chief Prosecutor to the International Criminal Court where he helped shape the first policies and strategies of the ICC.