First of all, let me thank Mr Karim Khan for his briefing today, and for submitting his 23rd report to the Security Council concerning the Court’s cases in Libya. We are particularly concerned by the numerous and serious crimes towards the Libyan civilian population and migrants referred to in the report.
Norway has been a staunch supporter of the ICC since its establishment, and we believe the mission of the Court remains as crucial as ever. The Office of the Prosecutor, and the Court, can count on our continued support.
Norway takes note also of the OTP’s renewed strategy of action for the situation in Libya, and we welcome the four core principles, including the empowerment of those impacted by alleged crimes to participate in the OTP’s work, and the fresh approach to engage with Libyan authorities.
Addressing impunity is critical to sustainable peace and stability in Libya. Accountability for the most serious crimes is key. Any meaningful reconciliation will depend on holding the perpetrators of atrocities to account. The ongoing work of the ICC concerning its cases in Libya is crucial in this regard. We call on the Libyan authorities, its partners, and the international community more broadly to co-operate with the Prosecutor’s Office. Let me recall that resolution 1970 specifically mandated the Libyan authorities to fully co-operate with and assist the ICC and the Prosecutor. An important aspect of such cooperation is for Libya - as well as the international community - to support timely arrests and surrender of suspects.
More broadly, Norway continues to support the Libyan-led and Libyan-owned political process, including the timely and safe holding of elections. And we commend the UN and Special Adviser Williams for assisting the Libyan parties in this process. We are worried about the current battle for executive control, and urge the parties to agree on a consensual way forward. This is critical to preserve the country’s unity and stability. We must avoid a new escalation of violence.
Norway welcomes the Prosecutor’s prioritisation of situations referred to it by the Security Council. We look forward to continued cooperation with all Council members in the fight against impunity and promoting accountability for mass atrocities. The Council must also assume its responsibility and examine every, possible, measure to support the Court- especially with respect to cases referred to it by the Council. Not doing so undermines the credibility of the international criminal justice system.
In closing, let me reiterate Norway’s unwavering support for the Court, and your office Prosecutor Khan.