Event marks 20 years since the establishment of International Criminal Court

Cyprus’ Supreme Court, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Law Office of the Republic, organised on Thursday an event to mark twenty years since the International Criminal Court (ICC) was founded in 1998.

Addressing the event, Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides stressed the importance Cyprus attaches to international justice, especially when it comes to war crimes, crimes against humanity and ending impunity for the perpetrators of such crimes.

The Republic of Cyprus, being herself a victim of such flagrant crimes committed by Turkey, with tragic results up until today, could not help but to take the lead in initiatives such as the establishment of the International Criminal Court Christodoulides noted. Despite reactions and regressions from countries that are scrutinised by the ICC, it remains an achievement of judicial and jurisdictional upgrading worldwide, which all members of the international community can rightly take pride in.

According to Attorney General Costas Clerides, Cyprus became the 55th party to the Rome Statute in 2002, following a Cabinet decision in 1998. In 2003, President of the Supreme Court of Cyprus Georgios Pikis was elected as an ICC judge.

But the ultimate goal of ending impunity and enforcing the law remains to be achieved, Clerides said in his speech, noting that large and powerful states with influence at international level have not yet joined the Rome Statute.

President of the Supreme Court Myron Nicolatos noted that in order to address contemporary challenges it is necessary to remain faithful and committed to international law and to respect for the rights and freedoms of all people without discrimination as well as to the vigorous application of democratic principles and the rule of law.

Source: Cyprus News Agency