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Press release |

International Criminal Court

We need careful definition of "crime of aggression"

Commenting on today's adoption of the European Parliament resolution on the International Criminal Court (ICC) by the plenary and with regard to the ICC Review Conference (May 31 - 1June 11 in Kampala/Uganda), Barbara Lochbihler, Green coordinator for Human Rights said:

"Significant progress has been made since the first judges and prosecutors were elected. The court is currently conducting investigations in five countries (Kenya, DR Congo, Sudan/Darfur, Uganda and Central African Republic). Next week's Review Conference is a good opportunity to reflect on the progress and work of the ICC. In order to publically reaffirm their commitment to the ICC, EU Member State governments and heads of State, and the EU Commission must participate in the Review Conference at the highest possible level.

The Review Conference will discuss the inclusion of the crime of aggression within the ICC's jurisdiction (article 5.1 of the Rome Statute). Any decision regarding the definition of crime of aggression must respect the independence of the Court. "Crime of aggression" means the planning, preparation, initiation or execution, by a person in a position effectively to exercise control over or to direct the political or military action of a State, of an act of aggression which, by its character, gravity and scale, constitutes a manifest violation of the Charter of the United Nations.

EU Member States must also call for the use of certain weapons to be considered as a war crime. We want to extend the definition of war crimes to include, in cases of internal armed conflict, the use of poison, poisoned weapons, asphyxiating, poisonous or other gases and all analogous liquids, materials or devices as well as the use of bullets that expand or flatten in the body.

Furthermore, EU Member States should actively cooperate in the transfer of individuals subject to an ICC arrest warrant who are present on EU territory."

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