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14 November 2013 - Security Council - Libya / ICC - Statement by Mr. Gérard Araud, Permanent Representative of France to the United Nations

(UN Translation)

I thank the Prosecutor for her report and presentation. I would like to reiterate our support for hear as well as for the International Criminal Court (ICC).

Following 42 years of dictatorship, Libya is now in transition. Violent acts are continuing, including against diplomatic missions. But the Libyan authorities, including Prime Minister Ali Zeidan, have reiterated their commitment to pursuing the country’s democratization. While the Libyan revolution exposed the shortcomings of State structures and the disastrous legacy of Qadhafism, Libyans have shown an unwavering determination in a post-revolutionary context, which is, by definition, difficult. The Council has mobilized to help them, and must continue to do so.

Despite its difficulties, Libya has asked to try Saif Al-Islam Al-Qadhafi and Abdullah Al-Senussi itself.

That courageous decision, which is in line with the Rome Statute and Resolution 1970, points to the willingness of the Libyan authorities to shoulder their responsibilities.

The judges of the ICC have authorized the Libyans to try Al-Senussi themselves, believing that Libya had the willingness and due competence to conduct that trial.

On the other hand, the judges rejected the request of the Libyan authorities to hear the case of Saif Al-Islam Al-Qadhafi. The Libyan Government has stated its intention to provide additional evidence to the Court on that matter.

We have no doubt that Libya, pursuant to Resolution 1970, will comply with the decision of the ICC judges.

The Prosecutor also indicated that she was continuing her investigation into allegations of crimes committed in Libya by those close to Al-Qadhafi who today might be situated outside Libyan territory, posing a threat to the new authorities. The Prosecutor can rest assured of our support. As for other allegations, we welcome the work carried out to establish a comprehensive strategy to put an end to crimes and impunity in Libya. As stated by Ms. Bensouda, the adoption of a new Libyan law on transitional justice and the establishment of a United Nations fact-finding and national reconciliation commission could help respond to allegations of crimes such as those committed in Misrata and Tawergha during the armed conflict of 2011 or those that were allegedly committed in Bani Walid in 2012.

Like the Prosecutor, we also welcome reports of a new Libyan draft law making rape in armed conflict a war crime.

Finally, we express our grave concern at the practice of torture and cases of deaths in detention in centres under the control of armed brigades. As he stated before the Council (see S/PV.7031 ), Mr. Tarek Mitri, the Special Representative of the Secretary-General and Head of the United Nations Support Mission in Libya, the Libyan authorities are well aware of this problem. Those practices must come to an end.

Resolution 1970 is an example of the capacity of the Security Council and, more generally, of the international community for unity and quick action. Given the atrocities committed by the Libyan leadership, the United Nations and regional organizations together condemned such acts. Resolution 1970, referring the situation in Libya to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, was at the heart of a process marking the isolation of criminals, regardless of their rank.

It is now a matter of ensuring follow-up to that approach.

The process initiated by Resolution 1970 must take its course, as the Council reaffirmed in resolutions 1973, 2009, 2040 and 2095. The ongoing process will require the full cooperation of Libya with the Office of the Prosecutor and the full support of the Council.

Learn more on Libya.



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Organisation des Nations Unies Présidence de la République France Diplomatie La France à l'Office des Nations Unies à Genève Union Européenne Première réunion de l'ONU