Building International Structures for Peace in 2018
PANA Press Release 28th December 2017
The United Nations and the International Criminal Court have provided a certain level of peace, stability, hope and justice since the Second World War. They have done this despite geopolitical interests, and attempts by the more powerful nations on the UN Security Council to control decisions and intimidate smaller nations with threats of isolation, intervention and war to threats to withdraw aid, funding and contracts.
The Assembly of States Parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court held its sixteenth session from 4 to 14 December 2017 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. The Assembly agreed to extend its jurisdiction to include the crime of aggression as a war crime which is a major change in international law, perhaps the most important for years,
PANA welcomes this decision and will seek legal advice on its implications, as it is critical for the Court's credibility that recognition of the crime of aggression is accompanied by reform of the ICC so that it can hold all countries and their leaders to account, not just third world dictators.
Three million US troops have used Shannon Airport over the past 15 years as a stopover on their way to imperialist wars, so we need to examine this new addition closely to see if it includes "complicity with wars of aggression" as an offence.
Speaking at a Christmas media briefing, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar TD said Ireland was a military neutral state which could become a diplomatic asset, insisting the country would not seek to join NATO.
Roger Cole of PANA stated that An Taoiseach has become an expert on new military terminology and spin; where the narrative or war propaganda now suggests it's all about humanitarian interventions, collateral damage, security threats and managing mass migration.
This is the same leader who recently pushed ahead with a government motion on PESCO despite strong opposition from 42 TDs that this agreement would move us closer to a European Army/Naval Force linked to NATO.
There should be no confusion about the definition of Irish neutrality if our starting point is 'no complicity with imperialist wars of aggression'. We must see through the spin and work together in building and improving international structures for Peace, Justice and Hope in 2018
For additional information:
- ICC Website, https://www.icc-cpi.int/Pages/item.aspx?name=pr1350.
- Rome Statute of the ICC, https://www.icc-cpi.int/nr/rdonlyres/ea9aeff7-5752-4f84-be94-0a655eb30e16/0/rome_statute_english.pdf
- Statement of the Prosecutor correcting assertions that his office "already ruled out putting Tony Blair on trial for war crimes.", https://www.icc-cpi.int//Pages/item.aspx?name=160704-otp-stat
- The European Union, Democracy or Empire, Edited by Roger Cole, 2017, PANA