tisdag, december 06, 2022

ICC's lack of jurisdiction over Russia's aggression on Ukraine and the establishment of a special tribunal

Worthy reminder on ICC lack of jurisdiction over Russia's aggression on Ukraine. When the inclusion of the crime of aggression into the jurisdiction of the ICC was debated and agreed upon 2010 in Kampala some states did not want to accept the jurisdiction at all over its citizens: China, the U.S. and Russia. Even states that were and are parties to the ICC statute such as France and UK opposed proposals that would extend the ICCs jurisdiction for the crime of aggression beyond the small groups of states that ratified the changes. This means that France and UK dont even accept the ICC s jurisdiction for the crime if committed by their nationals. If one would accept the position of France and UK, the ICC would only have jurisdiction if countries such as Iceland, Germany, Sweden, San Marino or Switzerland would start a war against each other. Now France (and other states) wants to create a special tribunal for the crime of aggression in relation to Russia. I dont have a major problem that Sweden - which has accepted the jurisdiction of the court over the crime of aggression - is pushing for this, but France? Is it realistic that the West can convince a substantial part of the rest of the world to vote in the UN general assembly to establish a special tribunal for the crime of aggression?

I do think that Russia's leaders - if they somehow are brought from power - should be held accountable for the crime of aggression, the better option would be through a hybrid tribunal supported by the EU and/or the CoE grounded in Ukrainian law and Ukrainian jurisdiction which already prohibits the crime of aggression. Don't go the UN general assembly route, I dont think there will be support enough. Last time there was a vote in UN General Assembly on the Russo-Ukrainian war (concerning damages to be paid by Russia) the voting numbers were 94 for, 14 against and 73 abstentions. I think voting numbers would get worse and thus also the legitimacy of such a court would diminish if there is a vote on a special tribunal for aggression, and I have not started to discuss the problems with immunity.

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