The Principle of Complementarity in the Rome Statute and the Colombian Situation: A Case that Demands More than a “Positive” Approach
23 June 2012
On 13 December 2011, the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (“ICC-OTP” or “OTP”) published a Report on Preliminary Examination Activities (the “ICCOTP Report”). The present document contains a detailed analysis of the preliminary examination conducted by the OTP concerning the alleged commission of crimes falling within ICC’s jurisdiction in Colombia, as well as our related observations and recommendations. The ICC-OTP Report asserts that there is reasonable basis to believe that crimes against humanity have been committed in Colombian territory. Preliminary research discussed in the report also suggests that various groups which have taken part in the hostilities in the context of the Colombian internal armed conflict may be responsible for the commission of war crimes. This is the first time that the ICC-OTP has publicly and officially shared its legal assessment in this regard. However, in concluding its analysis, the OTP states that it does not have sufficient basis to “conclude that the existing [national criminal] proceedings are not genuine, or carried out in good faith”, and it will continue to gather information.
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