Friday, August 20, 2010

ICC: Saint Lucia joins International Criminal Court

Saint Lucia has joined the growing list of nations that have ratified the pact establishing the International Criminal Court (ICC), the world’s first permanent court tasked with trying people accused of the most serious offences, such as genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity.

The Caribbean nation ratified the 1998 Rome Statute yesterday, becoming the 113th party to the ICC, which is based in The Hague.

The ICC welcomed Saint Lucia’s decision, calling it “a new sign of the international community’s commitment to put an end to impunity for the perpetrators of the most serious crimes that deeply shock the conscience of humanity.”

The Statute will enter into force on 1 November for Saint Lucia, whose move comes just over a week after Seychelles ratified the pact.

The Court, which is based in The Hague, currently has investigations open in five situations: the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), the war-torn Sudanese region of Darfur, northern Uganda, the Central African Republic (CAR) and Kenya.