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African States Failed Withdrawal from the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court: From Withdrawal Notifications to Constructive Engagement

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In 2016 three African states, namely South Africa, Burundi and The Gambia submitted written notifications of withdrawal from the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (Rome Statute) to the Secretary-General of the United Nations pursuant to Article 127 of the Rome Statute. Although the African Union (AU) welcomed and fully supported the three States’ withdrawal notifications and considered them as ‘pioneer implementers’ of the AU’s ‘Withdrawal Strategy’, The Gambia and South Africa withdrew their notifications of withdrawal before they became effective. This article examines three issues arising out of the said withdrawal notifications. It begins by examining the reasons as to why the three states submitted withdrawal notifications from the Rome Statute. It then considers the impact of the three states’ withdrawal notifications. It concludes by identifying steps that might be taken to ensure constructive engagement between African States and the ICC.

Affiliations: 1: Professor of International Law and Human Rights, Brunel Law School, Brunel University London, UK, manisuli.ssenyonjo@brunel.ac.uk

10.1163/15718123-01705003
/content/journals/10.1163/15718123-01705003
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/content/journals/10.1163/15718123-01705003
2017-10-15
2018-04-26

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