International Criminal Court (ICC) has condemned the economic sanctions imposed by the United States on the court’s prosecutor and a member of her office.
“These coercive acts, directed at an international judicial institution and its civil servants, are unprecedented and constitute serious attacks against the Court, the Rome Statute system of international criminal justice, and the rule of law more generally,” the ICC said in a press release.
The United States on Wednesday imposed sanctions on ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda and a senior staff member in her office for continuing to investigate war crimes allegations against Americans.
The sanctions include a freeze on assets held in the United States or subject to U.S. law.
O-Gon Kwon, president of the Assembly of States Parties of the ICC, also condemned the sanctions, saying that he strongly rejects “such unprecedented and unacceptable measures against a treaty-based international organization.”
“They only serve to weaken our common endeavour to fight impunity for mass atrocities,” he added.
In the sanctions announced, the US designated Bensouda and Mochochoko as terrorists and narcotic smugglers and imposed sanctions reserved to the category of people.
“Individuals and entities that continue to materially support those individuals risk exposure to sanctions as well,” US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said.
He added that the U.S. Department of State had restricted visas for individuals involved in the ICC efforts to investigate U.S. personnel.
Pompeo said that Washington has not ratified the Rome Statute of the ICC and “will not tolerate its illegitimate attempts to subject Americans to its jurisdiction.”