Justice Initiative Continues to Call for Fairness and Transparency in ICC Prosecutor Election Process
NEW YORK—In light of indications that International Criminal Court (ICC) states parties are considering late-stage changes to the election process for the court’s next prosecutor, the Justice Initiative has joined more than a dozen civil society groups in an open letter calling for states to ensure that the process remains fair, transparent, and merit-based. The letter takes note of current efforts by some states to expand the candidate pool to include additional individuals that the Committee on the Election of the Prosecutor (CEP) had not shortlisted.
The groups call on state parties to insist that the CEP’s assessment of any new candidates who may be considered for election be released, including why the committee declined to advance these individuals to the initial shortlist. It also calls on states parties to require that all candidates participate in a new round of robust public hearings, during which state and civil society representatives would have the opportunity to pose questions. All candidates should also undergo further vetting to ensure that the requirement of high moral character is met. To ensure that candidates have no history of past work misconduct, vetting should include independent investigations, criminal and other record verifications, and interviews with individuals who have interacted with the candidates in a professional capacity.
The election of the next prosecutor of the ICC is expected to be held in December 2020. The prosecutor will be elected for a nine-year, non-renewable term.
Update: As of October 23, 39 civil society organizations have signed the open letter.
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