The European Union today expressed “grave concern” about United States sanctions on members of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
On 11 June US President Donald Trump signed an executive order authorizing the possible imposition of economic sanctions and visa restrictions on certain persons associated with the ICC, including agents of States Parties that cooperate with the Court.
“The European Union expresses grave concern about the announced measures and reconfirms its unwavering support for the International Criminal Court,” said EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell in a statement.
“Sanctions against those involved in the work of the ICC, its staff and their families as well as persons associated with the ICC are unacceptable and unprecedented in scope and content,” he said.
“In leading the fight against impunity, the ICC must be able to work independently and impartially. The European Union remains committed to defending the Court from any outside interference aimed at obstructing the course of justice and undermining the international system of criminal justice. We urge the US to reverse its position,” said the EU’s High Representative.
“At a time when the rules-based international order is facing increased pressure, the strengthening of the international criminal justice system is more important than ever. The European Union will continue to advocate for the universality of the Rome Statute and invite all States that have not yet done so to consider joining the ICC to end impunity for the most serious crimes.”
The US was angered by calls by the ICC to investigate war crimes by US soldiers as well as by Israelis against the Palestinians.