Justice is a key prerequisite for lasting peace and sustainable development. Bangladesh is steadfast in its commitment to support global efforts to uphold justice and rule of law which is a critical pillar for maintenance of international peace and security.
In this regard, we recognize International Criminal Court as one of the principal global criminal justice institutions, and reaffirm our unwavering support to its independent and impartial judicial nature. We reiterate our commitment to uphold and defend the principles and values enshrined in the Rome Statute and to preserve its integrity.
My delegation notes with appreciation the report presented by the Secretary-General on the activities of the International Criminal Court (ICC). We acknowledge the efforts of the court to continue its functions during the reporting period despite various practical challenges including those posed by the Covid-19 pandemic.
In this regard, Bangladesh is pleased to once again co-sponsor the Resolution on “Report of the International Criminal Court”.
We believe, justice is critical for the resolution of global conflicts. We are more convinced of this having to bear the brunt of a conflict situation in our neighborhood which, as the Assembly is aware, forced over a million civilians take shelter in Bangladesh.
The forced displacement of Rohingya from the ancestral homes in Myanmar has now being considered by the International Criminal Court. We consider the investigation by the ICC Prosecutor’s Office into the situation of Rohingya minorities as an important confidence-building measure for safe and voluntary return of Rohingya to Myanmar, who continue to remain concerned about their safety in Myanmar in the absence of any accountability of the perpetrators.
We welcome the updates provided in the report in connection with the investigation in the situation of Bangladesh/Myanmar.
We stress that cooperation, assistance, and support of State parties to the Rome Statute as well as other States remain critical for discharging ICC’s mandate in a sustained and meaningful manner. In this regard, we support the efforts of ICC to enlarge its cooperation network in the region and join call of the Court to all State Parties to cooperate with its investigations, including Myanmar in this regard.
As reflected in the report, Bangladesh has been extending full cooperation to the Court in the investigation process.
We call upon Myanmar to cooperate with the International Criminal Court, so that the perpetrators of crimes committed against the Rohingya could be brought to justice and help break the cycle of violence and impunity in their country.
Updating governance mechanism, working method and judicial proceedings are critical to ensure efficient delivery of justice by the Court. In that context, we welcome the Court’s Review Process, initiated in 2019, with a view to strengthening the Court and the Rome Statute system of international criminal justice.
Bangladesh as one of the three Ad-hoc National Focal Point of the Review Mechanism is committed to this process.
The Trust Fund for Victims plays pivotal role in responding to the harm suffered by victims as a result of crimes that come under the Court’s jurisdiction. We attach high importance to its mandate and efficiency, which is reflected in our contribution to the Fund as well. We take note with satisfaction that throughout 2020 and 2021, the Fund’s activities grew significantly. We call for enhancing voluntary contributions for the Trust Fund for Victims to deliver on its reparation and assistance mandates.
To conclude, we reiterate the need for upholding the solidarity among State Parties, and the integrity and credibility of ICC as the Court of last resort in the overarching interest of fighting impunity for the gravest crimes under international law under its jurisdiction.
I thank you.