Grillo Parlante by Ivan Ingrilli

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Agosto 1, 2003





Hello Folks,nice site youre running!

MoveOn Bulletin
Friday, August 1, 2003
Noah T. Winer, Editor

Subscribe online at:



This week's grassroots interview is with Luis Moreno-Ocampo, the first Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court. Elected by the ratifying countries in April of this year, Mr. Moreno-Ocampo has tried criminal and human rights cases involving the extradition of a former Nazi officer from Argentina, political bribery, journalists' protection, and the military junta during Argentina's dictatorship and "dirty war."

Moreno-Ocampo, an Argentine lawyer, has also been a visiting professor at Stanford University and Harvard University in the United States. His acceptance address and his announcement last month of the Court's first examination are in this week's bulletin.

It is a great honor to have Mr. Moreno-Ocampo respond to five of the top questions posed by MoveOn members. Post and rank questions by Tuesday, August 5 at:


1. Introduction
2. One Link
3. Out of War, Justice
4. Terrorism and the Rule of Law
5. United States and ICC
6. The Court Is Born
7. First Examination
8. Credits
9. About the Bulletin


The International Criminal Court (ICC), envisaged since the 1948 Genocide Conventions and formally described in the 1998 Rome Statute, is now a reality.

Based on the model of universal human rights, the ICC was created from a recognition that states are often so decimated or intimidated by mass criminal acts that they are unable to respond with the enforcement of justice. Supporters of the ICC have crafted an international mechanism to hold individuals accountable for genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes when their national judicial system is either unable or unwilling to do so.

Despite resistance from the United States, the Rome Statute has been ratified by the requisite number of states in half the time anticipated. Since the ICC came into effect in July 2002, the ratifying states have elected a lead prosecutor and a panel of judges from around the world. Two weeks ago, the prosecutor announced the focus of his office's first examination.

As the resolution of conflicts between states continues to take place outside the rule of law, we take a close look at the ICC's development into a mature international institution.


"Too many atrocities have been committed by ruthless leaders who calculated that they could get away with mass murder. They have reasoned, quite accurately, that a bit of violence and intimidation is all it takes to shut down any possibility of national prosecution. That impunity stood as an invitation to much of the death and suffering of our time. The International Criminal Court will help break that deadly logic."
-- Kenneth Roth, Executive Director, Human Rights Watch


This timeline describes how the impetus for the ICC came out of two world wars and the Nuremberg War Crimes Trials, and how its creation was delayed by the Cold War.

This resource from Amnesty International includes the Rome Statute that created the ICC.

Questions answered by Human Rights Watch, a strong supporter of the ICC.


Some of you may recall an earlier MoveOn bulletin on how the ICC could be used to prosecute the September 11 criminals. At the time, the Court still needed to be ratified by eight more countries to become a reality. For thoughts on the ICC's potential use in the war on terrorism, take a(nother) look at our previous bulletin. bulletin15.html


The United States played a central role in the precursors to the ICC: the Nuremberg trials, the international tribunals for the former Yugoslavia and for Rwanda, and the Sierra Leone court. Yet the U.S. government always demanded a high degree of control over the Court and resisted its authority to prosecute U.S. military and government officials. President Clinton authorized signing -- but not ratifying -- the Rome Statute on December 31, 2000, just before leaving office and on the deadline set by the statute.

In May 2002, a new position emerged as the Bush administration nullified the United States' signature on the Rome Statute. In so doing, the administration withdrew U.S. support for the creation of the ICC and asserted the exclusion of U.S. citizens from the ICC's jurisdiction. The American NGO Coalition for the ICC describes and responds to the Bush administration's concerns. goes on to explain why the "unsigning" sets a bad precedent domestically and internationally.

After unsigning the Rome Statutes, the U.S. government passed domestic legislation withholding military aid from countries that ratify the ICC unless they agree not to turn over U.S. citizens or employees to the Court. The legislation also authorizes the U.S. President to use "all means necessary and appropriate" to free U.S. personnel detained by the ICC.

In June of this year, the U.S. insisted the UN Security Council extend immunity from ICC prosecution for its peacekeeping forces.

The Victims Trust Fund is asking U.S. citizens to send a $5 check to the ICC to alert elected officials that international justice is a priority for them.


After gaining the required 60 ratifications in April 2002, the ICC came into force on July 1 of the same year. This color-coded world map shows which countries have signed or ratified the Rome Statute as of May, 2003.

The Court can consider genocide, crimes against humanity, or war crimes which occurred after this date and which are not being tried in a national court. The ICC is independent of the United Nations and is funded by the ratifying states. The Court is housed at The Hague in the Netherlands.

In February 2003, the Assembly of States Parties -- composed of representatives from each of the ratifying countries -- elected the ICC's first panel of 18 judges using a transparent voting process.

In April, Luis Moreno-Ocampo was named as the first Chief Prosecutor for the ICC. An Argentine lawyer, Mr. Moreno-Ocampo successfully prosecuted leaders of that country's military dictatorship in the 1980s. His comments upon the occasion can be found on the ICC website.

An interview on Radio Netherlands discusses Moreno-Ocampo's qualifications for the job.


Two weeks ago, on July 16, Moreno-Ocampo announced the ICC's Office of the Prosecutor will gather information on the situation in Ituri, Democratic Republic of Congo, resulting from ethnic strife, HIV/AIDS, starvation, landmines, and the exploitation of natural resources. If a formal investigation follows, criminal charges could include summary executions, systematic torture, unlawful arrests and detention of individuals, abductions, mass rape, ritual cannibalization, large-scale displacement of civilians, and the forced recruitment of child soldiers. There are also alleged links to the activities of African, European, and Middle Eastern companies and the international banking system. newspoint/mediaalert/ pids009_2003-en.pdf (requires Acrobat Reader)

The BBC reports on the announcement.

Don't forget that you can pose and rate questions for Mr. Moreno-Ocampo in this week's grassroots interview.


Research team:
Lita Epstein, Sarah Parady, and Jesse Rhodes.

Editing team:
David Taub Bancroft, Barbara Burt, Melinda Coyle, Nancy Evans, Judy Green, and Mary Anne Henry.


The MoveOn Bulletin is a free email bulletin providing information, resources, news, and action ideas on important political issues. The full text of the MoveOn Bulletin is online at; you can subscribe to it at that address. The MoveOn Bulletin is a project of is an issue-oriented, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that gives people a voice in shaping the laws that affect their lives. engages people in the civic process, using the Internet to democratically determine a non-partisan agenda, raising public awareness of pressing issues, and coordinating grassroots advocacy campaigns to encourage sound public policies. You can help decide the direction of by participating in the discussion forum at:
http:/ /


mandato da Ivan Ingrilli il Venerdì Agosto 1 2003
aggiornato il Sabato Settembre 24 2005

URL of this article:


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