Electing the best to lead the fight against impunity. 

For fair, effective and independent international justice, states party to the Rome Statute must nominate and elect only the highest qualified candidates to the International Criminal Court (ICC) and its governing body, the Assembly of States Parties (ASP).

Since the first ICC elections in 2003, we have campaigned for states to nominate and elect highly-qualified and independent candidates to lead the fight against impunity through fair, transparent, and merit-based nomination and election processes.

The Coalition as a whole does not endorse or oppose individual candidates but advocates for the integrity of the nomination and election procedures.

At this December's ASP,  states will election six new judges to the ICC bench. The plenary of judges will elect the Court's registrar. 

Much is at stake for the delivery of the best justice possible at the world's highest criminal court for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.

The new judges could be the first to sit on situations arising from the fourth crime under ICC jurisdiction, the Crime of Aggression, which now has the requisite 30 state ratifications. 

But only if the ASP passes a resolution to amend the Rome Statute at the upcoming Assembly session in New York.

Electing the best ICC & ASP leaders

Elections for six new ICC judges

6 judicial vacancies |  9 year terms  |  16th ASP session  |  New York, December 2017  

From 24 April, ICC member states can nominate candidates for election to six soon-to-be vacant judicial positions at The Hague-based Court. 

The election follows the Court’s regular judicial elections process, which replaces a third of the 18 judges’ bench every three years. The new judges will serve a nine-year term from March 2018.

With its leading role as a model institution for the advancement of women’s rights, the nomination of female candidates will be especially important for these upcoming elections.

As five of the six outgoing ICC judges are women, unequal gender representation is a notable issue among the 12 remaining judges.

2017 ICC Judicial Elections Factsheet

10 female nominations needed

To ensure that the ICC bench is representative of gender, geographical representation and legal expertise, each judicial election has minimum voting requirements (MVRs).

At the upcoming elections, the following MVRs are in place:

  • 5 female candidates
  • One candidate from Asia-Pacific
  • One candidate from Africa
  • One candidate from Latin America and the Caribbean
  • One candidate with a specific background in criminal law and procedure (“List A”)
  • One candidate with a specific background in international law (“List B”)

This means that at least double these numbers need to be nominated.

With five of the six departing ICC Judges being women, no less than a minimum of 10 female candidates will need to be nominated to ensure that the ICC remains a gold standard of gender balance among judicial benches in the various international and regional Courts and Tribunals.

We urge states to seek out the very best and most qualified female candidates to uphold this fundamental standard.


Election for one ICC registrar

1 new registrar  |  5 year term  |  Elected by ICC Judges  |  16th ASP session  |  New York, December 2017  

The five year term of the current ICC Registrar ends on 16 April 2018.  The Presidency opened the application process on 28 March 2017 and the application deadline is set for 28 June 2017. 

After a review process, the Presidency will prepare a short list of candidates meeting the Rome Statute criteria and transmit the list to the ASP with a request for any recommendations. 

The ASP can submit recommendations that are transmitted “without delay” to the plenary of judges of the ICC, who are responsible for the election or reelection of the Registrar “as soon as possible.”

Factsheet on the 2017 ICC Registrar Election

Campaign on ICC/ASP Elections

Ahead of the 2017 ICC judicial elections, the Coalition is once again urging states parties to nominate only the most highly-qualified candidates and to ensure a fair, transparent, and merit-based election process.

As part of the campaign, the Coalition helps to publicize and raise awareness about ICC and ASP elections and about the candidates. All nominees are requested to complete a dedicated questionnaire that seeks to provide additional information about the candidates’ qualifications.

The Coalition also organizes interviews with all candidates; holds public seminars with available candidates and experts; and hosts public debates between the candidates.

These actions enable nominees to expand on their respective qualifications and expertise, and serve to promote fully-informed decision-making by State Parties delegates when voting.

The Coalition strongly opposes reciprocal political agreements (“vote-trading”) in all ICC and ASP elections.

Campaign on ICC/ASP Elections