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The Coalition for the International Criminal Court and its members are calling on Bangladesh to take all necessary steps to accede to the Rome Statute of the ICC as soon as possible. Bangladesh actively took part in the 1998 United Nations Diplomatic Conference of Plenipotentiaries on the Establishment of an International Criminal Court held in Rome. In 1999, the Government of Bangladesh signed the Statute of the ICC, the first country in South Asia to have signed the treaty.

Asia remains as an underrepresented region at the ICC, with only Afghanistan, Mongolia, Cambodia, Timor Leste, Tajikistan, Republic of Korea, and Japan as States Parties to the Treaty. Having Bangladesh join this new system of international justice will grant the region a stronger voice and a more meaningful role in making this historic institution- the first permanent, independent court capable of investigating and bringing to justice individuals who commit war crimes, crimes against humanity, and genocide- a truly effective mechanism for the protection of human rights and the rule of law.

Take Action Now!

Write a letter to the President to encourage him to ratify the Rome Statute as soon as possible!

You might like to use the following letter as a guide. Please be sure to “cc” all contacts below when sending your letters.

Send your letter to:

Mr. Md. Zillur Rahman
Honorable President
The People’s Republic of Bangladesh
Banga Bhaban
Dhaka, Bangladesh

Ms. Sheikh Hasina
Honorable Prime Minister
Prime Minister’s Office
Old Sangsad Bhaban
Tejgaon, Dhaka-1215, Bangladesh
Tel: +880 2 8151157 (PS-I to PM), 8155700, 8111599 (Parliament)
Email: [email protected]

Mr. Justice M. M. Ruhul Amin
Honorable Chief Justice of Bangladesh
Supreme Court Premises
Dhaka-1000, Bangladesh
Fax: +880 2 9565058

Barrister Shafiq Ahmed
Honorable Minister
Ministry of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs
Bangladesh Secretariat
Building: 4 (7th Floor)
Dhaka-1000, Bangladesh
Tel: +880 2 7160577, 9550016, 7164693
Fax: +880 2 7168557
Email: [email protected]

Dr. Dipu Moni
Honorable Minister
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Segun Bagicha
Dhaka-1000, Bangladesh
Tel: +880 2 9562852, 9562954
Fax: +880 2 9562188
Email: [email protected]

Mr. Mahbubey Alam
Honorable Attorney General for Bangladesh
Office of the Attorney General
Supreme Court Premises
Dhaka-1000, Bangladesh
Tel: +880 2 9562868
Fax: +880 2 95616568
Email: [email protected]



Your Excellency,

I am writing to urge you to ensure Bangladesh’s ratification of the Rome Statute of the ICC as soon as possible. The Court’s investigations in Uganda, Central African Republic, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Sudan signify that it is moving forward in its crucial work to end impunity for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. Bangladesh’s support for this new and vital system of international justice by acceding to the Rome Statute is therefore of the utmost importance.

The Rome Statute came into force in July 2002 and now has the support of well over half of the world’s nations. With the Czech Republic’s formal ratification in July 21, 2009, 110 states have now acceded to or ratified the treaty, and 139 are signatories. The new system of international justice, of which the International Criminal Court is a cornerstone, aims to ensure that the most serious international crimes no longer go unpunished. Support from countries around the globe is crucial to building, strengthening, and ensuring the success of this new justice system.

As a signatory to the Rome Statute, Bangladesh has an obligation to ratify the treaty and continue the engagement it started at the United Nations Diplomatic Conference of Plenipotentiaries on the Establishment of an International Criminal Court in 1998. Ratifying the treaty would demonstrate the commitment of the Government of Bangladesh to uphold human rights as is enshrined in the Constitution and exemplified in your commitment to UN Peacekeeping missions.

The ICC’s jurisdiction is not retroactive. The Court only has jurisdiction over crimes committed by nationals of states that have ratified the Rome Statute, as well as over crimes committed on the territory of states that have ratified the treaty since its entry into force. The ICC was also designed to complement existing national judicial systems and can only investigate cases when a country is unable or unwilling to try suspects in its national courts.

I urge your Excellency to use your good offices to ensure prompt treatment of the ratification dossier as soon as possible. This crucial step will allow Bangladesh to continue its path toward becoming a State Party to the Rome Statute. Prompt ratification will enable Bangladesh to participate more meaningfully in the highly important Review Conference of the ICC, which will take place in June 2010 and thus engage in the process leading to the adoption of a definition for the crime of aggression. Moreover, as a State Party, Bangladesh will also be able to participate in judiciary and other elections at the Court.

I strongly encourage Bangladesh to take this opportunity to formally join the ICC this year and by doing so express its ongoing support for justice and human rights.

Sincerely,

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