International Criminal Court came into existence in 1998 with a treaty known as Rome Statute. It is head quartered in Hague Netherland.
It investigate and tries individual charged of committing the crime such as genocide, war crimes or crime against humanity. Let us understand the these three terms in detail.
The definition elaborated below has been taken from authentic sources such as United Nations charters, Rome statute to International Criminal Court, etc.
Genocide is defined as violent attacks with intent to destroy a racial, a national, religious or ethnic group or part of it.
Genocide was first recognised, in modern world, as a crime by United Nations General Assembly in 1946 vide a resolution No. A/RES/96-I. And in convention on prevention and punishment of crime of genocide, codification for genocide was completed in 1948.
We find many instances of genocide throughout human history. Few examples are listed below for better understanding and supporting the argument.
War crime is defined as the volition of laws established by Geneva Conventions regulating how a individual of country must deal with enemy solders during war.
Though there have been many case of war crime throughout human history but the concept of war crime developed a the end of 19th century and in the beginning of 20th century.
- Nuremberg Trials (1945-1946) – There had been many high-ranking Nazi officials, who were prosecuted for war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide committed during World War II.
- My Lai Massacre (1968) – During the Vietnam War, around in between 347 and 504 unarmed South Vietnamese civilians, including women, children, and elderly individuals were killed by American soldiers in the village of My Lai.
- Srebrenica Massacre (1995) – During the Bosnian War, Bosnian Serb forces killed around 8,000 Bosniak men and boys in the town of Srebrenica, which had been declared a United Nations safe area.
- Tokyo Trials (1946-1948) – Like the Nuremberg Trials, the International Military Tribunal for the Far East prosecuted Japanese officials for war crimes, including atrocities committed during World War II.
- Chemical Warfare in Syria (2011-present) – The Syrian Civil War has seen multiple reports of the use of chemical weapons against civilians, leading to widespread suffering and death.
- Gaza War (2008-2009 and subsequent conflicts) – Allegations of war crimes have arisen during the conflicts between Israel and Palestinian militant groups in the Gaza Strip, including civilian casualties and targeting of non-combatants.
- Liberian Civil Wars (1989-2003) – The civil wars in Liberia were marked by widespread atrocities, including the use of child soldiers, massacres, and torture.
- Chechnya Conflict (1999-present) – In the North Caucasus region, Russian and Chechen separatists have committed war crimes during the ongoing conflict.
- Yugoslav Wars (1991-2001) – Numerous war crimes were committed during the breakup of Yugoslavia, including ethnic cleansing, mass killings, and sexual violence.
- Iraq War (2003-2011) – During the Iraq War, many incidents were reported such as the treatment of detainees and civilians by coalition forces and the Abu Ghraib torture scandal are considered war crime.
Crime Against Humanity.
Article 7 of the Rome Statute to ICC defines the crime against humanity- following an act committed as a systematic attack directed against any civilian population with knowledge of the attack.
- deportation or forcible transfer of population;
- Crime of apartheid;
- Sexual slavery, forced pregnancy, rape, enforced sterilization, enforced prostitution, or any other form of sexual violence of comparable gravity;
- Persecution against any identifiable group or collectively on racial, political, ethnic cultural, religious, national, or any other group recognized by international law.
Membership of International Criminal Court or Party to Rome Statute.
There have been around 123 countries who are party to the Rome Statute and International Criminal Court. Here are some List of main countries who are party to International Criminal Court.
- Afghanistan etc
However, Countries like USA ,India and China etc have abstained from membership of ICC. In other words, USA, India and China etc are not men met of International Criminal Court.
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