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ICC: Meeting of the Advisory Committee on Nominations of…

​The Advisory Committee on Nominations of Judges of the International Criminal Court (“the Committee”) held its sixth meeting from 18 to 22 September 2017 in The Hague. The Committee interviewed 12 candidates for six positions of judges at the International Criminal Court, whose nine-year term will start on 11 March 2018. The six judges will be elected at the sixteenth session of the Assembly of States Parties (“the Assembly”), scheduled to be held at United Nations Headquarters, New York, from 4 to 14 December 2017.

The Committee is mandated to facilitate that the highest-qualified individuals are appointed judges of the Court. The Committee was established in 2012 and is composed of nine members who serve three-year terms with the possibility of being re-elected once. The members are nationals of States Parties, reflecting the principal legal systems of the world and an equitable geographical representation as well as a fair representation of both genders. Its members are persons of a high moral character, who have established competence and experience in criminal or international law and who serve in the Committee in their personal capacity.

The assessment of the candidates for judges is based strictly on article 36, paragraphs 3 (a), (b) and (c), of the Rome Statute. The Committee considers written material submitted by the candidates and emphasizes the importance of face-to-face interviews. The candidacies are submitted under List A or List B as described in article 36, paragraph 3, of the Rome Statute, which requires “established competence in criminal law and procedure, and the necessary relevant experience, whether as a judge, prosecutor, advocate or in other similar capacity, in criminal proceedings” or “established competence in relevant areas of international law such as international humanitarian law and the law of human rights, and extensive experience in a professional legal capacity which is of relevance to the judicial work of the Court”. Candidates must be persons of high moral character, impartiality and integrity, have an excellent knowledge of and be fluent in at least one of the working languages of the Court and shall be available to serve on that basis from the commencement of their terms of office.

The report of the Committee (ICC-ASP/16/7) on the work at its sixth meeting may be found at the webpage of the Assembly. Further information about the Committee may be found at the Committee’s webpage.

 

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Assembly of States Parties 2017

From 4-14 December 2017, International Criminal Court (ICC) member states will gather at the United Nations headquarters in New York for the annual session of the Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute (ASP).

During annual ASP sessions, stakeholders in the international justice system discuss and decide upon matters key to the future functioning of the ICC. To read more about the upcoming ASP click http://www.coalitionfortheicc.org/assembly-states-parties-2017?utm_source=CICC+Newsletters&utm_campaign=e2f9ef19ac-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2017_10_05&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_68df9c5182-e2f9ef19ac-356533661

 

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Meet the 2017 Judicial Candidates Of the ICC

ICC member states Lesotho, Uganda, Croatia, Mongolia, Benin, Japan, Bosnia, Peru, Uruguay, Canada, Ghana and Italy have nominated 12 candidates for election to six soon-to-be vacant judicial positions at The Hague-based Court.

 

ICC member states have nominated 12 candidates for election to six soon-to-be vacant judicial positions at The Hague-based Court.

The election follows the Court’s regular judicial elections process, which replaces a third of the 18 judges’ bench every three years. The new judges will serve a nine-year term from March 2018. To read more about the election, click  http://www.coalitionfortheicc.org/fight/icc-elections-2017?utm_source=CICC+Newsletters&utm_campaign=e2f9ef19ac-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2017_10_05&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_68df9c5182-e2f9ef19ac-356533661

 

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Passing of M. Cherif Bassiouni, “the Godfather of International…

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After ignoring rights recommendations, govt claims ‘big victory’ in…

After dismissing recommendations on ending extrajudicial killings, not just the thousands associated with the war on drugs but also those protecting journalists and human rights defenders, the government claimed a “big victory” in the review of its record by the United Nations Human Rights Council.

Anti killings rally

“The Philippines scored a big victory in Geneva on the 22nd of September 2017 when the United Nations Human Rights Council overwhelmingly adopted Manila’s human rights report card. Readmorehttp://www.interaksyon.com/after-ignoring-rights-recommendations-govt-claims-big-victory-in-geneva/

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Rwanda: Post-Election Political Crackdown

Arrests, Enforced Disappearances, Threats Against Opponents;

 

Would-be independent presidential candidate Diane Rwigara is seen being taken to the police station for interrogation in Kigali, Rwanda, September 4, 2017.

 

Rwandan authorities have arrested, forcibly disappeared, and threatened political opponents since the August 2017 presidential elections, Human Rights Watch said today. The incumbent, Paul Kagame, won the election with a reported 98.79 percent of the vote.

Those targeted include a would-be independent presidential candidate, Diane Rwigara, and her family members and supporters, and several leaders and members of the Forces démocratiques unifiées (FDU)-Inkingi opposition party. read morehttps://www.hrw.org/news/2017/09/28/rwanda-post-election-political-crackdown

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Trial of Pennsylvania Resident and Alleged Liberian War Criminal…

Trial of Pennsylvania Resident and Alleged Liberian War Criminal Jabbateh “Jungle Jabbah” Set to Begin in Philadelphia October 2, 2017.

According to Civitas Maxima, Philadelphia, PA – The U.S. Government’s immigration fraud case against Liberian citizen, Pennsylvania resident and alleged war criminal Jabbateh, a/k/a “Jungle Jabbah” begins on October 2, 2017 in Philadelphia. Jabbateh has been charged by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania with two counts of fraud in immigration documents and two counts of perjury. read morehttps://www1.hnewsletter.ch/hosting/civitasmaxima/?action=view&iv=b45400be4ea4b1b7250fb4677bf9aa597fee1650d00d71aa56ba0a93311689f5&en=69a8d86f5b66741ed822db44ee

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Nigeria’s military approach against separatists stokes more tension

Nigeria’s military has reacted heavy-handedly to  the growing separatist swell in the south-east among organisations claiming to be the successors of the failed late-1960s Biafra secessionist movement. This month the military embarked on ‘Operation Python Dance’, a show of force to try to quell the Biafra agitation.

The exercise targeted the supporters of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) and its leader Nnamdi Kanu, who has been central to the Biafra agitation since 2015. Several pro-Biafrans have been arrested and the military has been accused of brutality, arbitrary killings and torture. Over 150 IPOB supporters were killed on last year’s Biafran Remembrance Day, human rights group Amnesty International reported. Read more https://issafrica.org/iss-today/nigerias-military-approach-against-separatists-stokes-more-tension

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Burundi | Crimes warrant ICC investigation and Human Rights…

In the face of mounting evidence of crimes against humanity committed with impunity by Burundian authorities, 35 African and international NGOs call on the Human Rights Council to push for investigation and prosecution by the International Criminal Court and for Burundi’s Council membership. This call was further elaborated by ISHR in a statement to the Council. A Council-mandated Commission of Inquiry, reporting at the current September session, has confirmed the continuation of serious human rights violations from April 2015 to date. Read more http://www.ishr.ch/news/burundi-crimes-warrant-icc-investigation-and-human-rights-council-suspension

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Attorney General of the Federation Set To Commence Trial…

The Attorney General of the Federation has announce its readiness to begin the arraignment of  Boko Haram suspects in various detention facilities in the country. It is slated to kick-start tentatively on Monday, October 7, 2017.

Below is the report from the office of the Attorney General;

 

STATUS OF TERRORISM CASES as at 11th Sept 2017

Concluded cases:  13

Convictions:  9

Ongoing trials at various Federal High Court Divisions:  33 cases

Charges filed awaiting trial in Kainji:  116 cases

Detainees recommended for release / deradicalisation programme for want of evidence:  220

Detainees profiled at the Kainji Detention Facility awaiting judicial proceedings / deradicalisation programme.  1670

Detainees remanded at the Federal High Court, Maiduguri and transferred from Giwa Barracks to Maiduguri Prisons: 651

 

SOME CHALLENGES

  • Poorly investigated case files due to pressure during the peak of conflict at the theater.
  • Over reliance on confession based evidence.
  • Lack of forensic evidence.
  • Absence of cooperation between investigators and prosecutors at pre- investigation stages.
  • Poor logistical facilities to transport defendants from detention facility to court for trial.
  • Scarcity of skilled/trained forensic personnel to handle investigation of complex cases.
  • Inadequate security for counsel handling terrorism cases.
  • Converting military intelligence to admissible evidence.

OTHER USEFUL INFORMATION

  1. The Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN has approved a list of prosecutors to handle the cases and the Legal Aid Council has equally released a list of defence counsels to stand in for the detainees/defendants.
  2. The proposed prosecutions of over One Thousand, Six Hundred (1600) detainees held in Kainji will commence by early October, 2017 after the opening of the new legal year.
  3. Currently, four (4) judges have been deputed by the Chief Judge of the Federal High Court to sit on the cases at Kainji and dispose of them expeditiously.
  4. It is expected that the special prosecutions will start with the detainees in Kainji followed closely by the disposal of the cases of the detainees in Giwa Barracks, Maiduguri until the cases are exhausted.
  5. The Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) as the coordinator of terrorism matters is expected to assist the court by providing the relevant detainees access to deradicalisation programmes where necessary.

This is the report of the on-the-spot assessment of the facilities and other incidentals preparatory to the commencement of trial of the over 1600 suspected Boko Haram terrorist  detained in  military detention facility  located in Wawa Barracks, Kainji, New Bussa, Niger State following successes recorded by the Nigeria Army and other security agencies in the fight against terrorism in Nigeria.

A team comprising representative of the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA), Federal High Court and the Office of the Honourable Attorney-General of the Federation were dispatched to Kainji from the 12th to 14th of September, 2017 to carry out the assessment and to discuss with relevant authorities and organisation in final preparation of the all-important national assignment.

Categorisation of the suspects

It will be noted that there are four categories of suspects at the Kainji detention facility mentioned above. These suspects are;

Boko Haram suspects who were hitherto investigated by the Joint Investigation Team set up by the Defence Headquarters otherwise known as DHQ/JIT and case files transmitted to the Honourable Attorney-General of the Federation and after a careful review of the cases based on their individual merit, it was discovered that they have no prima facie cases that will sustain a charge against them in any court of law hence were recommended for release and handed over to the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) for rehabilitation and/or de-radicalisation.

The second category is the set of suspects that the Honourable Attorney-General found prima facie cases against them and charges already filed at the Federal High Court, Abuja Division who are also mostly in the detention facility under reference and may be willing to plead guilty for a lesser sentences.

The other category are the suspects whose case file are either recommended for further investigation or that have no investigation conducted on them at all hence they do not have case files that will warrant the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation to form any opinion in respect of their case.

Lastly, the fourth category is the suspects whose cases were reviewed and a prima facie were found and may be willing to opt for a full trial.

From the above categorisation, it is important to state that the number of the suspects affected by any of the aforementioned categories would only be determined when the trial has commenced.

Comrade Salihu Othman Isah

Special Adviser, Media and Publicity to the Honourable Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, SAN