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ICC holds eighth Seminar on Cooperation in The Hague with national focal points

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On 24-26 April 2023, the eighth Seminar on Cooperation with national focal points took place at the seat of the International Criminal Court (“ICC” or “the Court”) in The Hague, The Netherlands. For three days, a number of officials and focal points from States where investigations are being conducted and other States playing a key role in cooperation met with Court officials and staff to discuss cooperation with the ICC and share good practices. Representatives from 19 States were present, including representatives from 2 States not parties to the Rome Statute.

ICC President Judge Piotr Hofmański stated: “The effective cooperation of States with the ICC is of central importance to the Court. And those gathered in this room play a key role in making that cooperation possible, from day to day, and year to year. By working together, we can make, little by little, headway toward reducing the space for impunity, strengthening access to justice for all, and building lasting peace”.

ICC President Judge Piotr Hofmański at the eighth Seminar on Cooperation at the ICC Headquarters in The Hague, Netherlands. ©ICC-CPI

In welcoming the delegates, ICC Prosecutor Karim AA Khan KC said: “Together, we strive to create a system of global justice that gives expression to the voice of human values. The critical factors in pursuit of this goal are cooperation and complementarity. The national focal points hold a strategic place at the forefront of this effort”.

ICC Registrar Osvaldo Zavala Giler stated: “The focal points are the keepers of the Court’s effectiveness in the countries where it operates, playing a crucial role in ensuring the ICC’s ability to deliver on its mandate”.

States play an essential role in implementing the Court’s decisions, orders and requests, and States Parties often nominate a national focal point to coordinate and channel communications between national authorities and the Court. This week, the focal points discussed topics related to cooperation, shared good practices and found the best ways to move forward to continue ensuring effective and efficient cooperation between the focal points and the Court, with a view to continue the Court’s efforts in improving the efficiency of the ICC’s proceedings.

The Seminar with focal points forms part of broader efforts to further advance cooperation with the ICC and enhance global support for the Court, in particular in countries where investigations are ongoing. The Seminar was funded by the European Union.

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