A preview of what’s in store for you on Monday, 9th December 2013 at 7.30 p.m. at the Bar Council at the screening of “The Court“.
“I think in 20 years everyone will be part of the ICC because it will be normal. Solve the conflicts through the law and not solve the conflicts by dropping bombs.”
‘The Court’ follows the life of Luis Moreno Ocampo, the first Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, a permanent tribunal to prosecute individuals for genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes, and the crime of aggression. The ICC was created by the Rome Statute and sits at The Hague, the Netherlands. It is intended to complement existing national judicial systems and may only exercise its jurisdiction when national courts are unwilling or unable to investigate or prosecute such crimes.
When we find Mr Ocampo in ‘The Court’, he and his team are prosecuting Thomas Lubanga Dyilo, a general from Congo, for crimes against humanity. Mr Dyilo was alleged to have recruited several child soldiers in his army. Through the lens of the movie cameras, we caught glimpses of the opening speech by Mr Ocampo himself, the evidence and witness testimonies as well as preparations and the final submissions of the Prosecution team in Mr Dyilo’s case.
The movie is a fascinating insight into the work of the Prosecutor. The Prosecution team not only have to prosecute, but must also conduct investigations themselves. We are also constantly reminded that the ICC is limited in its jurisdiction. Only 122 countries are parties to the Statute of the ICC. The biggest countries in the world are outside of its jurisdiction. There is also a sub-plot in which the Palestinian Authority requested that the ICC investigate Israel for possible crimes.
Malaysian is not a signatory of the Rome Statute.
It can seem like a thankless job. Especially when the cases are not really those that capture the imagination of the world. These are not the Nuremberg trials. Most ICC prosecutions are against warlords or military leaders from Africa. But the Prosecution team soldier on; they seem to actually believe in the work that they do. The world may not care or may not understand, but justice must still be sought for the victims and the accused must be given a fair hearing.
I would certainly recommend the movie to anyone. ‘The Court’ by Marcus Vetter will be screened on 9 December 2013 at the Bar Council Auditorium, 7.30pm. Director Marcus Vetter will be present for Q and A after the screening, along with LoyarBurokker Shanmuga Kanesalingam.