Global Policy Forum

NGOs and the International Criminal Court

Picture Credit:

In 1995 a handful of NGOs formed the NGO Coalition for an International Criminal Court (CICC). The coalition now includes over 2,500 NGOs worldwide united in their support for a fair and effective International Criminal Court (ICC). The CICC played a uniquely influential role in the establishment of this international institution. It significantly contributed to the process from the early discussions at the UN, through the Rome Statue, the ratification campaign and beyond.



Articles | Links

Articles and Documents

2011 | 2004 | 2003 | 2002 | 1999 | 1998

Maintain Integrity of the Rome Statute (June 23, 2000)

NGO Coalition for the International Criminal Court statement to the Court calling on States to maintain the integrity of the Rome Statute.

How Activists Shaped the Court (December 2003)

Marlies Glasius analyzes NGO involvement from the original idea for an International Criminal Court to its actual establishment. (Crimes of War Project)


Concern over ICC Funding (September 28, 2011)

Key donors of the International Criminal Court have issued calls for zero growth in the court’s budget. The Coalition for the International Criminal Court (CICC), which includes more than 2,500 NGOs, has stated that a zero growth of the courts’ budget would diminish the effectiveness of the court’s work, and obstruct its ability to respond rapidly. It should be up to the judges of the court to determine how the processes are carried out, not for bureaucrats who want to hold down its budget and reduce the court’s ability to fulfill its mandate. (Terraviva)


How Non Governmental Organizations Can Contribute to the Prosecution of War Criminals (September 10, 2004)

This Human Rights Watch guide explains the structure of the International Criminal Court (ICC) and asserts that NGOs can continue to show support for the ICC by sharing information with the public and the Court, and aiding victims and witnesses.

The Role of Human Rights NGOs in Relation to ICC Investigations (September 2004)

This Human Rights First discussion paper says human rights NGOs must rethink their practices due to the establishment of the International Criminal Court. While NGOs could serve as ideal information sources to the ICC because they see violations immediately and often have good relations with locals, the authors caution that NGOs often do not employ trained criminal investigators, could compromise their positions by associating with the global court, and may even harm ICC investigations.


ICC Launch Bolsters Human Rights Cause (February 28, 2003)

This article tracks the historic events of the 1990s that led to the ICCs creation. Human rights activists played a crucial role in galvanizing political support for the ICC and their success strikes a vital blow against impunity. (Institute for War and Peace Reporting)


Civil Society Expresses Concern about Nomination Process of Judges to the ICC (December 2, 2002)

The NGO Coalition for the International Criminal Court (CICC) pushes the governments to strictly use legal criteria for nominating individuals for judgeships. "The real concern here is not so much fudged election tactics," said William Pace, Convenor of the CICC, "but rather the effect mismatched qualifications will have on the Court's functioning." (M2 Presswire)

NGOs Win Fight For Equal Representation of ICC Judges (September 7, 2002)

In an NGO victory, a draft resolution ensures that elections for the 18 judges of the ICC represent principles of "equitable geographical representation" and "a fair representation of male and female judges.� (Inter Press Service)

NGOs Urge Europeans to Call US Bluff Over ICC (September 4, 2002)

NGOs urge European states to resist US efforts to obtain immunity for its citizens, calling the US threat to pull out of peacekeeping operations in the Balkans a bluff. (Agence France Presse)


World Report 1999: International Criminal Court

Examining the development of the Rome Statute, this section of the report concludes that the Statute reflects the successful advocacy work of over 200 NGOs representing different causes and regions. (Human Rights Watch)


NGOs Accredited to Participate in the Conference (June 5, 1998)

The UN Secretary General specially invites the NGOs accredited by the Preparatory Committee to the conference on the establishment of the ICC, citing the importance of their work to the conference. (United Nations)

Resolution 52/160: Establishment of the International Criminal Court (January 28, 1998)

This General Assembly resolution requests the Secretary General to invite NGOs to fully participate in the conference on the establishment of the ICC. (United Nations)



The official website of the NGO Coalition for the International Criminal Courtincludes extensive resources on the Court and the political controversy surrounding it.


Human Rights Watch is engaged in the campaign for the establishment of the ICC. Their site provides introductory materials as well as more comprehensive coverage of issues such as the Rome Statute and constitutional compatability.


The official website of the International Criminal Courtprovides access to basic documents as well as background information to the Court and its cases.



FAIR USE NOTICE: This page contains copyrighted material the use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. Global Policy Forum distributes this material without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. We believe this constitutes a fair use of any such copyrighted material as provided for in 17 U.S.C § 107. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.