TO THE PRESS
1 June 2001
Phnom Penh, Cambodia
CAMBODIA COMMITS TO BE ASEAN'S
TO RATIFY THE STATUTE OF THE INTERNATIONAL CRIMINAL COURT
Hun Sen gave Cambodia's commitment to be the first ASEAN
country to ratify the Rome Statute establishing the International
Criminal Court during a meeting with representatives of Cambodian
Human Rights and Development Association (ADHOC) and regional
human rights groups led by the Asian Forum for Human Rights and
Development (FORUM-ASIA) based in Thailand and the Asian Network
for the International Criminal Court (ANICC) based in Bangladesh.
Hun Sen recalled Cambodia's history, saying that its people had
been unfortunate victims of all crimes covered by the ICC namely
of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes which gives
Cambodia all the reasons to support the ratification of the Rome
Statute. He pledged to submit his proposal for immediate
ratification to the Parliament which is the body responsible to
ratify international treaties in Cambodia before he leaves for the
CG Meeting in Tokyo scheduled on June 11-13, 2001. He pledged
further to encourage the other countries in the region to likewise
ratify soon. So far, only three out of 10 ASEAN members have
signed. None has ratified.
meeting highlighted the significance of Cambodia's immediate
ratification, as it will allow its active participation in the
discourse on still unresolved provisions particularly the
definition of the crime of aggression and the role of the Security
Council. These issues are still being worked out by the UN
Preparatory Commission on the ICC which
convenes its sessions in New York.
Hun Sen expressed concern on the selection of judges and hopes
that the Rome Statute will put in place a fair, just and
independent body for international justice which was lacking in
the past. He said Cambodia will benefit the most because of its
incomparable experience of genocide in recent years.
meeting concluded by citing the gains of the ICC process since its
adoption in July 1998 in Rome, specifically in advancing gender
issues and in the role that NGOs play in the campaign to end
impunity and create better awareness of human rights in Cambodia,
the region and the world.
meeting took place after a two-day national seminar on the ICC
held in Phnom Penh organized by ADHOC, a local human rights group.
It was attended by representatives of the diplomatic community,
civil society organizations including media, lawyers, academics,
youth associations, members of the Senate and National Assembly
and government ministries. The closing remarks was given by H.E.
Nhek Bun Chhay, Second Vice-President of the Senate who likewise
committed to support the ratification of the Rome Statute of the
ICC by Cambodia. The list of recommendations of the seminar was
presented by Thun Saray, president of ADHOC on behalf of the
delegation to Samdech Hun Sen.
further information, call up ADHOC, tel. (855-23) 218653, fax no.
217229; e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org;
FORUM-ASIA tel. (66 2) 2769846-7, fax no. 6934939; ANICC tel. (88
02) 8315851, fax 8318561; e-mail email@example.com.