"Statement of Brazil on the referral of the International Commission of Inquiry on Darfur to THE International Criminal Court"
is in favor of the referral of the situation in Darfur to the International
Criminal Court (ICC). Nevertheless, Brazil was not able to join those members
that voted in favor of the resolution. We remain committed to bringing to
justice those accused of the crimes mentioned in the report of the Commission of
Inquiry, and, in that sense, we are ready to fully cooperate whenever necessary
with the International Criminal Court.
maintenance of international peace and the fight against impunity cannot be
viewed as conflicting objectives. Brazil reiterates that the ICC provides all
the necessary checks and balances to prevent possible abuses and politically
motivated misuse of its jurisdiction. Thus, efforts to secure broader immunities
from the jurisdiction of the Court are both unwarranted and unhelpful, in our view.
is the first time the Council has approved a referral of criminal matters to the
International Criminal Court, and that approval offers a rare opportunity for
the Council to act promptly in one of the most important issues on the
from our point of view, the referral should not be approved at any cost. Brazil
understands that there are limits to negotiating the approval of the referral
within the Council, and they refer, first, to the responsibilities of the
Council vis-à-vis an international instrument; secondly, to the integrity of
the Rome Statute, which now has 98 ratifications; and thirdly, to the
consistency of the position we have sustained since the negotiations on the Rome
Statute. For those reasons, Brazil abstained in the voting on the resolution on
recommended by the report of the International Commission of Inquiry, the ICC
remains the only acceptable instance of criminal law for dealing with the issue
of accountability in the Sudan. We have exhaustively negotiated a text that
could better reflect both the concerns of countries non-parties to the Rome
Statute, as well as the commitments of those countries that have ratified that
the sake of the referral, Brazil painstakingly agreed during the negotiations
upon provisions that presented a serious level of difficulty for my Government,
such as the exemption from jurisdiction for nationals of those countries not
parties to the Statute, even though — considering the need to approve the
referral — Brazil acceded to such a limited immunity.
go further would constitute an inadequate and risky interference of the Council
in the constitutional basis of an independent judicial body and a position
inconsistent with the principles we have defended in the past on this issue.
text just approved contains a preambular paragraph through which the Council
takes note of the existence of agreements referred to in article 98-2 of the
Rome Statute. My delegation has difficulty in supporting a reference that not
only does not favour the fight against impunity but also stresses a provision
whose application has been a highly controversial issue. We understand that it
would be a contradiction to mention, in the very text of a referral by the
Council to the ICC, measures that limit the jurisdictional activity of the
addition, Brazil also was not in a position to support operative paragraph 6,
through which the Council recognizes the existence of exclusive jurisdiction, a
legal exception that is inconsistent in international law.
are substantial issues that, in our view, will not contribute to strengthening
the role of the ICC — which is our aspiration. Brazil has consistently
rejected initiatives aimed at extending exemptions of certain categories of
individuals from ICC jurisdiction, and we maintain our position to prevent
efforts that may have the effect of dismantling the achievements reached in the
field of international criminal justice.
the acceleration and the format of negotiations during the last few days have
prevented some delegations from balancing the clear objective of referral to the
ICC against the hindrances imposed thereon. Insurmountable constraints thus
prevented Brazil from voting in favor of a proposal that we have always
understood would be the appropriate instrument to help curb violence and end
impunity in Darfur.