States parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court
The states parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court are those sovereign states that have ratified, or have otherwise become party to, the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court. The Rome Statute is the treaty that established the International Criminal Court, an international court that has jurisdiction over certain international crimes, including genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes that are committed by nationals of states parties or within the territory of states parties. States parties are legally obligated to co-operate with the Court when it requires, such as in arresting and transferring indicted persons or providing access to evidence and witnesses. States parties are entitled to participate and vote in proceedings of the Assembly of States Parties, which is the Court's governing body. Such proceedings include the election of such officials as judges and the Prosecutor, the approval of the Court's budget, and the adoption of amendments to the Rome Statute.
- 1 States parties
- 2 Acceptance of jurisdiction
- 3 Signatories which have not ratified
- 4 Non-party, non-signatory states
- 5 See also
- 6 Notes
- 7 References
As of 27 October 2017, 123 states have ratified or acceded to the Rome Statute.
|State party||Signed||Ratified or acceded||Entry into force||Amend. 1||Amend. 2||Amend. 3|
|Afghanistan||—||10 February 2003||1 May 2003||—||—||—|
|Albania||18 July 1998||31 January 2003||1 May 2003||—||—||—|
|Andorra||18 July 1998||30 April 2001||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Antigua and Barbuda||23 October 1998||18 June 2001||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Argentina||8 January 1999||8 February 2001||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Australia||9 December 1998||1 July 2002||1 September 2002||—||—||—|
|Austria||7 October 1998||28 December 2000||1 July 2002||In force||In force||Ratified|
|Bangladesh||16 September 1999||23 March 2010||1 June 2010||—||—||—|
|Barbados||8 September 2000||10 December 2002||1 March 2003||—||—||—|
|Belgium||10 September 1998||28 June 2000||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Belize||5 April 2000||5 April 2000||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Benin||24 September 1999||22 January 2002||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Bolivia||17 July 1998||27 June 2002||1 September 2002||—||—||—|
|Bosnia and Herzegovina||17 July 1998||11 April 2002||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Botswana||8 September 2000||8 September 2000||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Brazil||7 February 2000||20 June 2002||1 September 2002||—||—||—|
|Bulgaria||11 February 1999||11 April 2002||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Burkina Faso||30 November 1998||16 April 2004||1 July 2004||—||—||—|
|Cambodia||23 October 2000||11 April 2002||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Canada||18 December 1998||7 July 2000||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Cape Verde||28 December 2000||10 October 2011||1 January 2012||—||—||—|
|Central African Republic||12 December 1999||3 October 2001||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Chad||20 October 1999||1 November 2006||1 January 2007||—||—||—|
|Chile||11 September 1998||29 June 2009||1 September 2009||In force||In force||—|
|Colombia[A]||10 December 1998||5 August 2002||1 November 2002||—||—||—|
|Comoros||22 September 2000||18 August 2006||1 November 2006||—||—||—|
|Congo, Democratic Republic of the||8 September 2000||11 April 2002||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Congo, Republic of the||17 July 1998||3 May 2004||1 August 2004||—||—||—|
|Cook Islands||—||18 July 2008||1 October 2008||—||—||—|
|Costa Rica||7 October 1998||7 June 2001||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Côte d'Ivoire[B]||30 November 1998||15 February 2013||1 May 2013||—||—||—|
|Croatia||12 October 1998||21 May 2001||1 July 2002||In force||In force||Ratified|
|Cyprus||15 October 1998||7 March 2002||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Czech Republic||13 April 1999||21 July 2009||1 October 2009||In force||In force||—|
|Denmark[C]||25 September 1998||21 June 2001||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Djibouti||7 October 1998||5 November 2002||1 February 2003||—||—||—|
|Dominica||—||12 February 2001||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Dominican Republic||8 September 2000||12 May 2005||1 August 2005||—||—||—|
|East Timor||—||6 September 2002||1 December 2002||—||—||—|
|Ecuador||7 October 1998||5 February 2002||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|El Salvador||—||3 March 2016||1 June 2016||In force||In force||—|
|Estonia||27 December 1999||30 January 2002||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Fiji||29 November 1999||29 November 1999||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Finland||7 October 1998||29 December 2000||1 July 2002||In force||In force||Ratified|
|France[D]||18 July 1998||9 June 2000||1 July 2002||—||—||Ratified|
|Gabon||22 December 1998||20 September 2000||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Gambia, The[E]||4 December 1998||28 June 2002||1 September 2002||—||—||—|
|Georgia||18 July 1998||5 September 2003||1 December 2003||In force||In force||—|
|Germany||10 December 1998||11 December 2000||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Ghana||18 July 1998||20 December 1999||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Greece||18 July 1998||15 May 2002||1 August 2002||—||—||—|
|Grenada||—||19 May 2011||1 August 2011||—||—||—|
|Guatemala||—||2 April 2012||1 July 2012||—||—||—|
|Guinea||7 September 2000||14 July 2003||1 October 2003||—||—||—|
|Guyana||28 December 2000||24 September 2004||1 December 2004||Ratified||Ratified||—|
|Honduras||7 October 1998||1 July 2002||1 September 2002||—||—||—|
|Hungary||15 January 1999||30 November 2001||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Iceland||26 August 1998||25 May 2000||1 July 2002||—||In force||—|
|Ireland||7 October 1998||11 April 2002||1 July 2002||—||Ratified||—|
|Italy||18 July 1998||26 July 1999||1 July 2002||—||—||Ratified|
|Japan||—||17 July 2007||1 October 2007||—||—||—|
|Jordan||7 October 1998||11 April 2002||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Kenya||11 August 1999||15 March 2005||1 June 2005||—||—||—|
|Korea, South||8 March 2000||13 November 2002||1 February 2003||—||—||—|
|Latvia||22 April 1999||28 June 2002||1 September 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Lesotho||30 November 1998||6 September 2000||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Liberia||17 July 1998||22 September 2004||1 December 2004||—||—||—|
|Liechtenstein||18 July 1998||2 October 2001||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Lithuania||10 December 1998||12 May 2003||1 August 2003||In force||In force||—|
|Luxembourg||13 October 1998||8 September 2000||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Macedonia, Republic of||7 October 1998||6 March 2002||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Madagascar||18 July 1998||14 March 2008||1 June 2008||—||—||—|
|Malawi||2 March 1999||19 September 2002||1 December 2002||—||—||—|
|Maldives||—||21 September 2011||1 December 2011||—||—||—|
|Mali||17 July 1998||16 August 2000||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Malta||17 July 1998||29 November 2002||1 February 2003||In force||In force||—|
|Marshall Islands||6 September 2000||7 December 2000||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Mauritius||11 November 1998||5 March 2002||1 July 2002||In force||—||—|
|Mexico||7 September 2000||28 October 2005||1 January 2006||—||—||—|
|Moldova||8 September 2000||12 October 2010||1 January 2011||—||—||—|
|Mongolia||29 December 2000||11 April 2002||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Montenegro[F]||—||23 October 2006||3 June 2006||—||—||—|
|Namibia||27 October 1998||25 June 2002||1 September 2002||—||—||—|
|Nauru||13 December 2000||12 November 2001||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Netherlands||18 July 1998||17 July 2001||1 July 2002||In force||In force||Ratified|
|New Zealand[G]||7 October 1998||7 September 2000||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Niger||17 July 1998||11 April 2002||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Nigeria||1 June 2000||27 September 2001||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Norway||28 August 1998||16 February 2000||1 July 2002||In force||—||Ratified|
|Palestine[H][I]||—||2 January 2015||1 April 2015||Ratified||In force||—|
|Panama||18 July 1998||21 March 2002||1 July 2002||Ratified||Ratified||—|
|Paraguay||7 October 1998||14 May 2001||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Peru||7 December 2000||10 November 2001||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Philippines[J]||28 December 2000||30 August 2011||1 November 2011||—||—||—|
|Poland||9 April 1999||12 November 2001||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Portugal||7 October 1998||5 February 2002||1 July 2002||In force||In force||Ratified|
|Romania||7 July 1999||11 April 2002||1 July 2002||—||—||Ratified|
|Saint Kitts and Nevis||—||22 August 2006||1 November 2006||—||—||—|
|Saint Lucia||27 August 1999||18 August 2010||1 November 2010||—||—||—|
|Saint Vincent and the Grenadines||—||3 December 2002||1 March 2003||—||—||—|
|Samoa||17 July 1998||16 September 2002||1 December 2002||In force||In force||—|
|San Marino||18 July 1998||13 May 1999||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Senegal||18 July 1998||2 February 1999||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Serbia||19 December 2000||6 September 2001||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Seychelles||28 December 2000||10 August 2010||1 November 2010||—||—||—|
|Sierra Leone||17 October 1998||15 September 2000||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Slovakia||23 December 1998||11 April 2002||1 July 2002||In force||In force||Ratified|
|Slovenia||7 October 1998||31 December 2001||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|South Africa[K]||17 July 1998||27 November 2000||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Spain||18 July 1998||24 October 2000||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Suriname||—||15 July 2008||1 October 2008||—||—||—|
|Sweden||7 October 1998||28 June 2001||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Switzerland||18 July 1998||12 October 2001||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Tanzania||29 December 2000||20 August 2002||1 November 2002||—||—||—|
|Tajikistan||30 November 1998||5 May 2000||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Trinidad and Tobago||23 March 1999||6 April 1999||1 July 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Tunisia||—||24 June 2011||1 September 2011||—||—||—|
|Uganda||17 March 1999||14 June 2002||1 September 2002||—||—||—|
|United Kingdom[L]||30 November 1998||4 October 2001||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Uruguay||19 December 2000||28 June 2002||1 September 2002||In force||In force||—|
|Vanuatu||—||2 December 2011||1 February 2012||—||—||—|
|Venezuela||14 October 1998||7 June 2000||1 July 2002||—||—||—|
|Zambia||17 July 1998||13 November 2002||1 February 2003||—||—||—|
Article 127 of the Rome Statute allows for states to withdraw from the ICC. Withdrawal takes effect one year after notification of the depositary, and has no effect on prosecution that has already started. As of March 2018 four states have given formal notice of their intention to withdraw from the statute, although two rescinded before it came into effect.
|State party||Signed||Ratified or acceded||Entry into force||Withdrawal notified||Withdrawal effective||Withdrawal rescinded|
|Burundi||13 January 1999||21 September 2004||1 December 2004||27 October 2016||27 October 2017||—|
|Gambia, The||4 December 1998||28 June 2002||1 September 2002||10 November 2016||—||10 February 2017|
|Philippines||28 December 2000||30 August 2011||1 November 2011||17 March 2018||17 March 2019||—|
|South Africa||17 July 1998||27 November 2000||1 July 2002||19 October 2016||—||7 March 2017|
Several states have argued that the ICC is a tool of Western imperialism, only punishing leaders from small, weak states while ignoring crimes committed by richer and more powerful states. This sentiment has been expressed particularly by African states, 34 of which are members of the ICC, due to a perceived disproportionate focus of the Court on Africa. Nine out of the ten situations which the ICC has investigated were in African countries.
In June 2009, several African states, including Comoros, Djibouti, and Senegal, called on African states parties to withdraw en masse from the statute in protest against the indictment of Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir. In September 2013, Kenya's National Assembly passed a motion to withdraw from the ICC in protest against the ICC prosecution of Kenyan Deputy President William Ruto and President Uhuru Kenyatta (both charged before coming into office). A mass withdrawal from the ICC by African member states in response to the trial of Kenyan authorities was discussed at a special summit of the African Union in October. The summit concluded that serving heads of state should not be put on trial, and that the Kenyan cases should be deferred. However, the summit did not endorse the proposal for a mass withdrawal due to lack of support for the idea. In November the ICC's Assembly of State Parties responded by agreeing to consider proposed amendments to the Rome Statute to address the AU's concerns.
In October–November 2016, Burundi, South Africa and Gambia all notified the UNSG of their intention to withdraw from the ICC. Burundi was the subject of an ongoing preliminary investigation by the ICC at the time. South Africa's exit followed its refusal to execute an ICC warrant for Sudan's al-Bashir when he was in the country. Following Gambia's presidential election later that year, which ended the long rule of Yahya Jammeh, Gambia rescinded its withdrawal notification. The constitutionality of South Africa's notice was challenged by the Democratic Alliance opposition party, which argued that the approval of parliament was required and not sought. The High Court of South Africa ruled in February 2017 that the government's notification was not legal, and it was required to revoke the notice effective 7 March 2017. A parliamentary bill on ICC withdrawal was subsequently withdrawn by the government. However, the governing African National Congress party still supports withdrawing.
On March 14, 2018, Rodrigo Duterte, the Philippine President who is under preliminary examination by the ICC, announced the country would withdraw from the Rome Statute. The withdrawal will be effective on March 17, 2019. The legal validity of the withdrawal has been challenged at the Supreme Court of the Philippines.
The Rome Statute obliges states parties to cooperate with the Court in the investigation and prosecution of crimes, including the arrest and surrender of suspects. Part 9 of the Statute requires all states parties to “ensure that there are procedures available under their national law for all of the forms of cooperation which are specified under this Part”.
Under the Rome Statute's complementarity principle, the Court only has jurisdiction over cases where the relevant state is unwilling or unable to investigate and, if appropriate, prosecute the case itself. Therefore, many states parties have implemented national legislation to provide for the investigation and prosecution of crimes that fall under the jurisdiction of the Court.
As of April 2006, the following states had enacted or drafted implementing legislation:
|States||Complementarity legislation||Co-operation legislation|
|Australia, Belgium, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Germany, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Slovakia, South Africa, Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, United Kingdom||Enacted||Enacted|
|Colombia, Congo, Serbia, Montenegro||Enacted||Draft|
|Burundi, Costa Rica, Mali, Niger, Portugal||Enacted||None|
|France, Norway, Peru, Poland, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland||Draft||Enacted|
|Austria, Japan, Latvia, Romania||None||Enacted|
|Argentina, Benin, Bolivia, Botswana, Brazil, Central African Republic, Democratic Republic of Congo, Dominica, Gabon, Ghana, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Kenya, Lesotho, Luxembourg, Nigeria, Samoa, Senegal, Uganda, Uruguay, Zambia||Draft||Draft|
|Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Honduras, Hungary, Jordan, Panama, Venezuela||Draft||None|
|Afghanistan, Albania, Andorra, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Cyprus, Djibouti, Fiji, the Gambia, Guinea, Guyana, Liberia, Malawi, Marshall Islands, Mauritius, Mongolia, Namibia, Nauru, Paraguay, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, San Marino, Sierra Leone, The Republic of Macedonia, Tajikistan, Timor-Leste, United Republic of Tanzania||None||None|
Summary of signatures and ratifications/accessions
|December 31, 1998||72|
|December 31, 1999||93|
|December 31, 2000||139|
|December 31, 1998||0||72|
|December 31, 1999||6||87|
|December 31, 2000||27||112|
|December 31, 2001||48||92|
|December 31, 2002||87||55|
|December 31, 2003||92||51|
|December 31, 2004||97||46|
|December 31, 2005||100||43|
|December 31, 2006||104||41|
|December 31, 2007||105|
|December 31, 2008||108||40|
|December 31, 2009||110||38|
|December 31, 2010||114||34|
|December 31, 2011||120||32|
|December 31, 2012||121|
|December 31, 2013||122||31|
|December 31, 2014|
|December 31, 2015||123|
|December 31, 2016||124|
Allocation of judges
The number of states parties from the several United Nations regional groups has an influence on the minimum number of judges each group is allocated. Paragraph 20(b) of the Procedure for the nomination and election of judges of the Court states that any of the five regional groups shall have at least two judges on the court. If, however, a group has more than 16 states parties, there is a third judge allocated to that group.
The following table lists how many states parties there are from each regional group. After the accession of the Maldives on 1 December 2011, the Asian Group has become the last regional group to have three judges allocated. This already had consequences for the ICC judges election, 2011.
|Group||Number of states parties||Number of judges allocated|
|Eastern European Group||18||3|
|Latin American and Caribbean Group||27||3|
|Western European and Others Group||25||3|
Acceptance of jurisdiction
Pursuant to article 12(3) of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, a state that is not a party to the Statute may, "by declaration lodged with the Registrar, accept the exercise of jurisdiction by the Court with respect to the crime in question." Even if the state that does so is not a State Party to the Statute, the relevant provisions of the statute would still be applicable on the accepting state, but only on an ad hoc basis.
To date, the Court has made public five article 12(3) declarations. Additionally, a declaration was submitted in December 2013 by the Freedom and Justice Party of Egypt seeking to accept jurisdiction on behalf of Egypt. However, the Office of the Prosecutor found that as the party has lost power following the 2013 Egyptian coup d'état that July, it did not have the authority to make the declaration.
|State||Date of acceptance||Start of jurisdiction||End of jurisdiction||Date of membership|
|Côte d'Ivoire[B]||18 April 2003||19 September 2002||Indefinite||1 May 2013|
|Palestine[H]||21 January 2009||1 July 2002||Indefinite||1 April 2015|
|Ukraine[M]||9 April 2014||21 November 2013||22 February 2014||Non-member|
|Palestine[H]||31 December 2014||13 June 2014||Indefinite||1 April 2015|
|Ukraine[M]||8 September 2015||20 February 2014||Indefinite||Non-member|
|Italicized entries signify that the declaration has been deemed invalid by the Office of the Prosecutor.|
Signatories which have not ratified
Of the 139 states that had signed the Rome Statute, 31 have not ratified.
|Algeria||28 December 2000|
|Angola||7 October 1998|
|Armenia||1 October 1999|
|Bahamas, The||29 December 2000|
|Bahrain||11 December 2000|
|Cameroon||17 July 1998|
|Egypt||26 December 2000|
|Eritrea||7 October 1998|
|Guinea-Bissau||12 September 2000|
|Haiti||26 February 1999|
|Iran||31 December 2000|
|Israel*[N]||31 December 2000|
|Jamaica||8 September 2000|
|Kuwait||8 September 2000|
|Kyrgyzstan||8 December 1998|
|Monaco||18 July 1998|
|Morocco||8 September 2000|
|Mozambique||28 December 2000|
|Oman||20 December 2000|
|Russia*[O]||13 September 2000|
|São Tomé and Príncipe||28 December 2000|
|Solomon Islands||3 December 1998|
|Sudan*[P]||8 September 2000|
|Syria||29 November 2000|
|Thailand||2 October 2000|
|Ukraine[M]||20 January 2000|
|United Arab Emirates||27 November 2000|
|United States*[Q]||31 December 2000|
|Uzbekistan||29 December 2000|
|Yemen||28 December 2000|
|Zimbabwe||17 July 1998|
|*||= States which have declared that they no longer intend to ratify the treaty|
According to the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, a state that has signed but not ratified a treaty is obliged to refrain from "acts which would defeat the object and purpose" of the treaty. However, these obligations do not continue if the state has "made its intention clear not to become a party to the treaty". Four signatory states (Israel, Russia, Sudan, and the United States) have informed the UN Secretary General that they no longer intend to become parties to the Rome Statute, and as such have no legal obligations arising from their signature.
The government of Bahrain originally announced in May 2006 that it would ratify the Rome Statute in the session ending in July 2006. By December 2006 the ratification had not yet been completed, but the Coalition for the International Criminal Court said they expected ratification in 2007.
Israel voted against the adoption of the Rome Statute but later signed it for a short period. In 2002, Israel notified the UN Secretary General that it no longer intended to become a party to the Rome Statute, and as such, it has no legal obligations arising from their signature of the statute.
Israel states that it has "deep sympathy" with the goals of the Court. However, it has concerns that political pressure on the Court would lead it to reinterpret international law or to "invent new crimes". It cites the inclusion of "the transfer of parts of the civilian population of an occupying power into occupied territory" as a war crime as an example of this, whilst at the same time disagrees with the exclusion of terrorism and drug trafficking. Israel sees the powers given to the prosecutor as excessive and the geographical appointment of judges as disadvantaging Israel which was prevented from joining any of the UN Regional Groups.
Russia signed the Rome Statute in 2000. On 14 November 2016 the ICC published a report on its preliminary investigation of the Russian military intervention in Ukraine which found that "the situation within the territory of Crimea and Sevastopol factually amounts to an on-going state of occupation" and that "information, such as reported shelling by both States of military positions of the other, and the detention of Russian military personnel by Ukraine, and vice-versa, points to direct military engagement between Russian armed forces and Ukrainian government forces that would suggest the existence of an international armed conflict in the context of armed hostilities in eastern Ukraine". In response, a presidential decree by Russian President Vladimir Putin approved "sending the Secretary General of the United Nations notice of the intention of the Russian Federation to no longer be a party to the Rome Statute". Formal notice was given on 30 November.
Former Senator Kraisak Choonhavan called in November 2006 for Thailand to ratify the Rome Statute and to accept retrospective jurisdiction, so that former premier Thaksin Shinawatra could be investigated for crimes against humanity connected to 2,500 alleged extrajudicial killings carried out in 2003 against suspected drug dealers.
A 2001 ruling of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine held that the Rome Statute is inconsistent with the Constitution of Ukraine. Notwithstanding, in October 2006, the Ambassador to the United Nations stated that the Ukrainian government would submit a bill to the parliament to ratify the Statute. Ukraine ratified Agreement on the Privileges and Immunities of the Court (APIC) without having ratified the Rome Statute on 2007-01-29. On 4 April 2012, the Foreign Minister of Ukraine told the President of the International Criminal Court that "Ukraine intends to join the Rome Statute once the necessary legal preconditions have been created in the context of the upcoming review of the country’s constitution." A bill to make the necessary constitutional amendments was tabled in Parliament in May 2014. Article 8 of the Ukraine–European Union Association Agreement, which was signed in 2014, requires Ukraine to ratify the Rome Statute. In 2016 the Ukrainian parliament adopted the necessary constitutional amendments to allow for ratification of the treaty, however they will not enter into force for three years.
The United States signed the Rome Statute in December 2000 (under President Bill Clinton), but Clinton decided not to submit the treaty to the United States Senate for ratification, stating: "I will not, and do not recommend that my successor [George W. Bush] submit the treaty to the Senate for advice and consent until our fundamental concerns are satisfied." Opponents of the ICC in the U.S. Senate are "skeptical of new international institutions and still jealously protective of American sovereignty"; before the Rome Statute, opposition to the ICC was largely headed by Republican Senator Jesse Helms. On May 6, 2002, the Bush administration stated that the U.S. did not intend to become a state party to the ICC; in a letter to Secretary-General of the United Nations Kofi Annan, Under Secretary of State for Arms Control and International Security John Bolton stated that "the United States does not intend to become a party to the treaty," and that "the United States has no legal obligations arising from its signature on December 31, 2000." This letter is sometimes called the "unsigning" of the treaty; however, legal opinions on the actual legal effect of the letter differ, with some scholars arguing that the president does not have the power to unilaterally "unsign" treaties.
The United States "adopted a hostile stance towards the Court throughout most of the Bush presidency." In 2002, Congress enacted the American Servicemembers' Protection Act (ASPA), which was signed into law on August 2, 2002; the act's "overriding purpose of the ASPA was to inhibit the U.S. government from supporting the ICC." Major provisions of the ASPA blocked U.S. funding of the ICC and required the U.S. "to enter into agreements with all ICC signatory states to shield American citizens abroad from ICC jurisdiction, under the auspices of Article 98 of the Rome Statute," which bars the ICC "from prosecuting individuals located on the territory of an ICC member state, where such action by the Court would cause the member state to violate the terms of any other bilateral or multilateral treaty to which it is a party." Traditionally, Article 98 was used in relation to traditional status of forces agreements (SOFAs) and status of mission agreements (SOMAs), in which nations hosting U.S. military personnel by invitation agreed to immunize them from prosecution in foreign courts. The Bush administration, supported by opponents of the ICC in Congress, adopted a new strategy of aggressively pursuing Bilateral Immunity Agreements (BIAs), "which guarantee immunity from ICC prosecution for all American citizens in the country with which the agreement is concluded" rather than just U.S. military forces. "Under the original ASPA, nations who refused to conclude BIAs with the United States were subject to sanctions, including the loss of military aid (though these provisions have since been repealed)." As of December 2006, the U.S. State Department of State reported that it had signed 102 BIAs. In 2002, the United States threatened to veto the renewal of all United Nations peacekeeping missions unless its troops were granted immunity from prosecution by the Court. In a compromise move, the Security Council passed Resolution 1422 on 12 July 2002, granting immunity to personnel from ICC non-states parties involved in United Nations established or authorized missions for a renewable twelve-month period. This was renewed for twelve months in 2003 but the Security Council refused to renew the exemption again in 2004, after pictures emerged of US troops abusing Iraqi prisoners in Abu Ghraib, and the US withdrew its demand.
Under the Obama administration, the U.S. did not take moves to ratify the Rome Statute, but did adopt a "cautious, case-by-case approach to supporting the ICC" by supporting cases before the ICC. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton stated that the U.S. encouraged "effective ICC action in ways that promote U.S. interests by bringing war criminals to justice." U.S. steps in support of the ICC undertaken under the Obama administration included participating in the annual Assembly of States Parties as an observer; using the U.S.'s permanent seat on the UN Security Council to support the referral of cases to the ICC (including the Libya in 2011); "sharing intelligence on fugitives and providing other substantial in-kind support" to the ICC; and expanding the War Crimes Rewards Program."
On 24 March 2007, the Yemeni parliament voted to ratify the Rome Statute. However, some MPs claim that this vote breached parliamentary rules, and demanded another vote. In that further vote, the ratification was retracted.
Non-party, non-signatory states
The deadline for signing the Rome Statute expired following 31 December 2000. States that did not sign before that date have to accede to the Statute in a single step.
Of all the states that are members of the United Nations, observers in the United Nations General Assembly, or otherwise recognized by the Secretary-General of the United Nations as states with full treaty-making capacities, there are 42 which have neither signed nor acceded to the Statute:
Additionally, in accordance with practice and declarations filed with the Secretary-General, the Rome Statute is not in force in the following dependent territories:
- Guernsey – a Crown dependency of the United Kingdom
- Jersey – a Crown dependency of the United Kingdom
- Tokelau – a territory of New Zealand
The People's Republic of China has opposed the Court, on the basis that it goes against the sovereignty of nation states, that the principle of complementarity gives the Court the ability to judge a nation's court system, that war crimes jurisdiction covers internal as well as international conflicts, that the Court's jurisdiction covers peacetime crimes against humanity, that the inclusion of the crime of aggression weakens the role of the UN Security Council, and that the Prosecutor's right to initiate prosecutions may open the Court to political influence.
The government of India has consistently opposed the Court. It abstained in the vote adopting the statute in 1998, saying it objected to the broad definition adopted of crimes against humanity; the rights given to the UN Security Council to refer and delay investigations and bind non-states parties; and the use of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction not being explicitly criminalized. Other anxieties about the Court concern how the principle of complementarity would be applied to the Indian criminal justice system, the inclusion of war crimes for non-international conflicts, and the power of the Prosecutor to initiate prosecutions.
Indonesia has stated that it supports the adoption of the Rome Statute, and that “universal participation should be the cornerstone of the International Criminal Court”. In 2004, the President of Indonesia adopted a National Plan of Action on Human Rights, which states that Indonesia intends to ratify the Rome Statute in 2008. This was confirmed in 2007 by Foreign Minister Hassan Wirajuda and the head of the Indonesian People's Representative Council's Committee on Security and International Affairs, Theo L. Sambuaga. In May 2013, Defense Minister Purnomo Yusgiantoro stated that the government needed "more time to carefully and thoroughly review the pros and cons of the ratification".
In February 2005 the Iraqi Transitional Government decided to ratify the Rome Statute. However, two weeks later they reversed this decision, a move that the Coalition for the International Criminal Court claimed was due to pressure from the United States.
In March 2009, Lebanese Justice Minister said the government had decided not to join for now. The Coalition for the International Criminal Court claimed this was due in part to "intense pressure" from the United States, who feared it could result in the prosecution of Israelis in a future conflict.
In 2011, Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz, the Malaysian minister in charge of Law & Parliamentary Affairs, stated that the government had agreed to ratify the Rome Statute. It reported that, in Malaysia, the cabinet is the authority which can ratify international treaties. As of 2016, the Attorney general was reviewing Malaysia's ratification of the statute.
Following a resolution by Parliament requesting that the government ratify the Statute, Narahari Acharya, Ministry of Law, Justice, Constituent Assembly and Parliamentary Affairs of Nepal, said in March 2015 that it had "formed a taskforce to conduct a study about the process". However, he said that it was "possible only after promulgating the new constitution", which was being debated by the 2nd Nepalese Constituent Assembly.
Pakistan has supported the aims of the International Court and voted for the Rome Statute in 1998. However, Pakistan has not signed the agreement on the basis of several objections, including the fact that the Statute does not provide for reservations upon ratification or accession, the inclusion of provisional arrest, and the lack of immunity for heads of state. In addition, Pakistan (one of the largest suppliers of UN peacekeepers) has, like the United States, expressed reservations about the potential use of politically motivated charges against peacekeepers.
Turkey is currently a candidate country to join the European Union, which has required progress on human rights issues in order to continue with accession talks. Part of this has included pressure, but not a requirement, on Turkey to join the Court which is supported under the EU's Common Foreign and Security Policy. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan stated in October 2004 that Turkey would "soon" ratify the Rome Statute, and the Turkish constitution was amended in 2004 to explicitly allow nationals to be surrendered to the Court. However, in January 2008, the Erdoğan government reversed its position, deciding to shelve accession because of concerns it could undermine efforts against the Kurdistan Workers Party.
- List of Presidents and Vice-Presidents of the Assembly of States Parties of the International Criminal Court
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- Colombia made use of article 124 of the Rome Statute to exempt war crimes committed by its nationals or on its territory from the jurisdiction of the Court for a period of seven years. The relevant declaration came into force with the coming into force of the Rome Statute, for Colombia, on 1 November 2002 and expired on 31 October 2009.
- On 1 October 2003 the Ivorian government submitted a declaration, dated 18 April 2003, accepting the Court's jurisdiction for "acts committed on Ivorian territory since the events of 19 September 2002." Côte d'Ivoire subsequently acceded to the Rome Statute, on 15 February 2013, and therefore is now a state party.
- The Rome Statute entered into force for the Faroe Islands on 1 October 2006 and for Greenland on 1 October 2004.
- France made use of article 124 of the Rome Statute to exempt war crimes committed by its nationals or on its territory from the jurisdiction of the Court for a period of seven years. The relevant declaration came into force with the coming into force of the Rome Statute, for France, on 1 July 2002. France withdrew its declaration on 13 August 2008 with effect from 15 June 2008.
- The Gambia formally notified the depositary of its intentions to withdraw from the Statute, effective 10 November 2017. However, this notification was rescinded effective 10 February 2017.
- Montenegro succeeded to the Rome Statute on 3 June 2006, the date of its independence from Serbia and Montenegro, per a declaration it sent to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, which was received on 23 October 2006.
- The Rome Statute is not in force for Tokelau.
- The Palestinian National Authority submitted a declaration on 22 January 2009, dated the previous day, accepting the Court's jurisdiction for "acts committed on the territory of Palestine since 1 July 2002." However, on 3 April 2012 the Prosecutor of the ICC deemed the declaration invalid because the Rome Statute only permits sovereign states to make such a declaration and Palestine was designated an "observer entity" within the United Nations (the body that is the depositary for the Rome Statute) at the time. On 29 November 2012, the United Nations General Assembly voted in favour of recognising Palestine as a non-member observer state. However, in November 2013 the Office of the Prosecutor concluded that this decision did "not cure the legal invalidity of the 2009 declaration." A second declaration accepting the court's jurisdiction was reportedly submitted in July 2014 by Palestine's Justice Minister Saleem al-Saqqa and General Prosecutor Ismaeil Jabr, but the Prosecutor responded that only the Head of State, Head of Government or Minister of Foreign Affairs had the authority to make such a declaration. After failing to receive confirmation from Minister of Foreign Affairs Riyad al-Maliki during an August meeting that the declaration had been made on behalf of the Palestinian government, the Prosecutor concluded that the declaration was invalid because it did not come from an authority with the power to make it. On 2 September 2014, the Prosecutor clarified that if Palestine filed a new declaration, or acceded to the Rome Statute, it would be deemed valid. In December 2014, the assembly of state parties of the ICC recognized Palestine as a "state" without prejudice to any legal or other decisions taken by the court or any other organization. A new declaration was submitted 1 January 2015 by Palestine, dated 31 December 2014, accepting the court's jurisdiction effective 13 June 2014. Palestine acceded to the Rome Statute on 2 January 2015, and the prosecutor accepted Palestine as state party. However, the court has not made a ruling on the legal validity of this decision.
- Canada filed a declaration stating that it does not recognize Palestine as a state and as such it does not consider the Rome Statute to be in force between it and Palestine.
- The Philippines formally notified the depositary of its intentions to withdraw from the Statute, effective 17 March 2019. The legal validity of this has been challenged at the Supreme Court of the Philippines.
- South Africa formally notified the depositary of its intentions to withdraw from the Statute, effective 19 October 2017. However, this notification was rescinded effective 7 March 2017.
- The Rome Statute entered into force for Akrotiri and Dhekelia; Anguilla; Bermuda; the British Virgin Islands; the Cayman Islands; the Falkland Islands; Montserrat; the Pitcairn Islands; Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha; and the Turks and Caicos Islands on 11 March 2010. The Statute entered into force for the Isle of Man on 1 February 2013. The Statute entered into force for Gibraltar on 20 April 2015.
- Ukraine submitted a declaration accepting the jurisdiction of the Court for a limited time period on 17 April 2014. Another declaration accepting jurisdiction indefinitely was submitted on 8 September 2015.
- On 28 August 2002, Israel notified the UN Secretary General that it no longer intended to ratify the treaty and therefore no longer bears any legal obligations arising from its signature.
- On 30 November 2016, Russia notified the UN Secretary General that it no longer intended to ratify the treaty and therefore no longer bears any legal obligations arising from its signature.
- On 26 August 2008, Sudan notified the UN Secretary General that it no longer intended to ratify the treaty and therefore no longer bears any legal obligations arising from its signature.
- On 6 May 2002, the United States notified the UN Secretary General that it no longer intended to ratify the treaty and therefore no longer bears any legal obligations arising from its signature.
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