You are here:   Blogs >Joshua Rozenberg > Gaddafi has little to fear from ICC
Standpoint Blogs
Joshua Rozenberg
Sunday 27th February 2011
Gaddafi has little to fear from ICC
The UN Security Council resolution referring the situation in Libya since 15 February to the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court is, of course, to be welcomed. But I don't suppose Muammar Gaddafi will lose much sleep over resolution 1970, adopted unanimously last night. 

Gaddafi did not sign the court's founding statute and, as so the resolution recognises, Libya has no obligations under it. Neither do the other Middle Eastern states that failed to ratify the Rome Statute.

More to the point, the prosecutor has proved himself incapable of handling even a simple prosecution. Luis Moreno-Ocampo took office in June 2003 and must stand down when his term expires in the middle of next year. He has not yet completed a single trial, let alone achieved a conviction.

The court's first trial — that of Thomas Lubanga — started more than three years ago. Although the trial court announced last week that it had rejected a defence application to throw out the case as an abuse of process, the hearing still has several months to run.

Moreno-Ocampo's decision last year to seek the arrest of the Sudanese president, Omar al-Bashir, on genocide charges has achieved little beyond complaints that the prosecutor was prejudicing his own prosecution.

In a recent column for Standpoint, I explained that former heads of state have no immunity for crimes against their peoples. But bringing them to justice needs more than a UN resolution — particularly one that says (in paragraph 8) that the UN won't even pay for an investigation.

Like this article? Share, save or print using the icons below
Delicious   Digg   StumbleUpon   Propeller   Reddit   Magnoliacom   Newsvine   Furl   Facebook   Google   Yahoo   Technorati   Icerocket   Print   Mail   Twitter   

Post your comment

This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
About Joshua Rozenberg

Joshua Rozenberg is an independent legal commentator who presents Law in Action on BBC Radio 4.

Recent Blog Posts
Blog List
More Posts
Popular Standpoint topics