ANC Europe Welcomes Establishment of International Crimes Court

BRUSSELS–The European Armenian Federation for Justice and Democracy (ANC of Europe) welcomes the establishment of the International Crimes Court (ICC) charged with the judgement of perpetrators of war crimes–crimes against humanity–and genocide.

"This is a victory for all defenders of humans rights–who have long fought for its creation; despite opposition from some states–we have no doubt that the ICC will at last help break the heavy silence on the most abominable crimes of modern times," stated Hilda Tchoboian–the European Armenian Federation’s Chairperson.

"We do however regret that as a result of pressure from some states–including Turkey–the ICC will not have the authority to try past crimes that never benefited from international justice," Tchoboian continued.

According to international experts–in the genocides of the Armenia’s and the Cambodians–the absence of justice by an international court served as significant encouragement for new crimes against humanity.

"If the international community–in the past–failed in its duty to condemn those guilty of committing genocides–it can no longer afford not to assign responsibility for these crimes today. It is up to international democratic institutions–like the Council of Europe and the European Parliament–and to democratic nations to remind countries with past criminal records of their responsibilities in terms of recognition and reparation. The work by the UN Humans Rights Commission’s experts with regard to the issue of impunity is very clear in this respect," stated Tchoboian.

The European Armenian Federation proposes to the Convention on the Future of Europe the establishment of a European penal jurisdiction on the prevention and repression of war crimes and crimes against humanity–which would also have responsibility of dealing with all attempts to justify or deny such criminal acts. This universal authority should have retroactive powers and should reaffirm the non-applicability of a statute of limitation to these crimes.

The Federation proposes that ratification of the ICC statutes be a condition of membership in the European Union for the new candidate states. Turkey is among the countries that have not signed the statutes of the International Crimes Court.

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