Statement by the Permanent Representative of Pakistan during the Security Council Briefing on Libya (ICC)(8 May 2013)

Mr. President,

We thank the ICC Prosecutor, Ms. Fatou Bensouda, for her briefing. We have taken note of the fifth report of the ICC Prosecutor to the Security Council. We commend her hard work and commitment to the international criminal justice system.

Pakistan is not a signatory to the Rome Statute and thus it is not a member of the International Criminal Court. However, we recognize the rights and obligations of the States that are members of the ICC.

The formation of a democratically elected government is a significant achievement for the Libyan people. The country has now entered the important phase of constitution making, which is critical for its prosperous and stable future. Success in this endeavour can only be achieved with the support and cooperation of all stakeholders.

Recent events in Tripoli, however, confirm that Libya continues to face some daunting challenges. The actions of the revolutionary brigades are likely to undermine the progress so far achieved. We call on all armed groups in Libya to lay down their arms, and engage in the democratic process and dialogue to resolve their differences and grievances.

Libya has submitted an admissibility challenge in the case of Abdullah al-Senussi. The Libyan government has asserted that it is willing and able to prosecute him and therefore has precedence over the Court in accordance with the complementary nature of its jurisdiction. The Prosecutor’s report has noted that Libya is acting fully in compliance with the Rome Statute in challenging the admissibility of the cases against Saif Al Islam and Abdullah Al-Senussi.

We hope that the request of the Libyan authorities to try Senussi and Saif Al Islam will be positively considered.

We understand that the ICC would like to monitor the trials of these individuals if conducted in Libya. The monitoring would be done in accordance with the arrangements with the Libyan government. This would give an opportunity to the Libyan government to demonstrate its commitment to hold fair trials, in accordance with due process, and Libya’s international obligations.

The ICC Prosecutor has commended the cooperation extended by the Libyan Government. We call upon the Libyan Government to maintain its engagement with the Court, and provide the necessary information for consideration of these cases.

We also encourage NATO to fully cooperate with the Court as well as Libya’s national efforts to investigate the civilian casualties during the conflict.

As regards the investigation of other alleged crimes committed in Libya, we underline the need to conduct thorough and impartial investigations regardless of which side perpetrated the crimes.

The international criminal justice system has demonstrated that national judicial mechanisms can ultimately be more efficient and cost effective in dealing with such crimes. The ICC and other international tribunals have succeeded in dealing with only a handful of cases. For the bulk of the cases, greater reliance on national judicial systems is advisable.

Therefore, strengthening of the Libyan judicial system is essential for addressing the crimes that occurred in that country. The Libyan government must continue to formulate and implement a comprehensive strategy to address these crimes. The international community should extend full support to Libya to achieve this objective.

In the long run, the promotion of reconciliation is essential for fostering nation unity and bridging the fissures caused by the conflict. Achieving a balance between the imperatives of justice and peace is always a difficult challenge. This can be best achieved through national mechanisms and institutions.

In conclusion, we underscore Pakistan’s fullest support for the well being and prosperity of the people of Libya. We wish them success in their quest for reconciliation, stability, and institution building.

I thank you Mr. President.