The International Criminal Court on Wednesday held a ceremony at The Hague "to welcome the State of Palestine" as the 123 State Party to the Rome Statute, the ICC’s founding treaty.
At the ceremony, the ICC’s Second Vice-President, Judge Kuniko Ozaki, presented Palestinian Authority Foreign Minister Dr. Riad Al-Malki, with a special edition of the Rome Statute, as a symbol of their joint commitment to the rule of law.
The President of the Assembly of States Parties (which governs the ICC), H.E. Sidiki Kaba, a number of ICC Judges, ICC Deputy Prosecutor James Stewart and ICC Registrar Herman von Hebel attended the ceremony as well.
Vice-President Kuniko Ozaki stated: “Accession to a treaty is, of course, just the first step. As the Rome Statute today enters into force for the State of Palestine, Palestine acquires all the rights as well as responsibilities that come with being a State Party to the Statute. These are substantive commitments, which cannot be taken lightly.”
Kaba declared that “such a highly symbolic commitment confirms, once again, that people all over the world embrace the noble ideals of the ICC, that are ideals of peace and justice for all.”
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