Seven judges elected to International Criminal Court

The first resumed session of the Assembly of States Parties to the International Criminal Court (ICC), which got underway yesterday, elected seven judges for the Court, six of them women. All were chosen from 43 candidates in one round of secret balloting. The judges elected this morning were Maureen Harding Clark of Ireland, Fatoumata Dembele Diarra of Mal), Sang-hyun Song of the Republic of Korea, Sylvia Helena de Figueiredo Steiner of Brazil, Akua Kuenyehia of Ghana, Elizabeth Odio Benito of Costa Rica, and Navanethem Pillay of South Africa. The States Parties will reconvene tomorrow morning to continue voting. All the judges elected this week will be sworn in when the Court is inaugurated in The Hague on 11 March.The Court is expected to be operational by the end of 2003 and will be the world’s only permanent tribunal for prosecuting individuals responsible for war crimes, including genocide, and crimes against humanity, and, eventually, the crime of aggression. The Court will have jurisdiction only over crimes committed after 1 July 2002, when the Statute entered into force.