South Africa cancels decision to withdraw from ICC

Notice comes after High Court in Pretoria ruled that decision to withdraw from The Hague-based tribunal was invalid

South Africa cancels decision to withdraw from ICC

World Bulletin / News Desk

South Africa’s government has canceled its decision to withdraw from the International Criminal Court (ICC), according to a letter posted on the United Nations’ treaties website.

South Africa informed the UN Secretary-General in a letter dated March 7 that it was revoking the withdrawal since a court in the country had ruled against the move being taken without parliamentary approval.

“In order to adhere to the said Judgment, I hereby revoke the instrument of withdrawal from the Rome statute of the International Criminal Court with immediate effect,” the letter said.

South Africa's justice minister, Michael Masutha, announced last October that the government had begun the formal process of withdrawing from The Hague-based tribunal.

He said the 1998 Rome Statute that formed the ICC was in conflict with South Africa's Diplomatic Immunities and Privileges Act which protects diplomats and other visiting officials from being arrested.

In 2015, Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir visited South Africa despite being wanted by the ICC for war crimes. A court in the capital Pretoria ruled at the time that al-Bashir should not be allowed to leave the country but the government ignored the order.

Two weeks ago, however, a High Court in the capital Pretoria ruled that the government's decision to withdraw from the ICC was invalid as it had not been approved by parliament.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 08 Mart 2017, 14:24