UN / ICC LIBYA

08-Nov-2017 00:02:45
International Criminal Court (ICC) Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda reminded “each and every combatant engaged in fighting in Libya” that her Office remains seized of the situation in country, adding that, if their actions amount to war crimes or crimes against humanity, “they can be prosecuted.” UNIFEED
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STORY: UN / ICC LIBYA
TRT: 02:45
SOURCE: UNIFEED
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ARABIC / ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 08 NOVEMBER 2017, NEW YORK CITY
SHOTLIST
FILE - NEW YORK CITY

1. Wide shot, UNHQ exterior

08 NOVEMBER 2017, NEW YORK CITY

2. Wide shot, Security Council
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Fatou Bensouda, Chief Prosecutor, International Criminal Court (ICC):
“I remind each and every combatant engaged in fighting in Libya that my Office remains seized of the situation in Libya, and if their actions amount to war crimes or crimes against humanity, they can be prosecuted.”
4. Med shot, delegates
5. SOUNDBITE (English) Fatou Bensouda, Chief Prosecutor, International Criminal Court (ICC):
“Let me be clear. If serious crimes under the Rome Statute continue to be committed in Libya, I will not hesitate to bring new applications for warrants of arrest. These crimes must stop. Those taking part in hostilities must do so within the framework of the law and with full respect for international humanitarian law.”
6. Med shot, delegates
7. SOUNDBITE (English) Fatou Bensouda, Chief Prosecutor, International Criminal Court (ICC):
“I also note with grave concern reports of unlawful killings, including the execution of detained persons; kidnappings and forced disappearances; torture; prolonged detentions without trial or other legal process; and arbitrary detention, torture, rape, and other ill-treatment of migrants in official and unofficial detention centres.”
8. Wide shot, Security Council
9. SOUNDBITE (English) Fatou Bensouda, Chief Prosecutor, International Criminal Court (ICC):
“Let me stress that irrespective of any reported domestic investigation that may be underway, Libya remains trader a legal obligation arising from Resolution 1970 to immediately arrest and surrender Mr Al-Werfalli to the ICC. He must be transferred to the Court to stand trial.”
10. Med shot, Libyan ambassador
11. SOUNDBITE (English) Fatou Bensouda, Chief Prosecutor, International Criminal Court (ICC):
“Ensuring justice for victims of serious crimes perpetrated in Libya, and bringing to account those who have committed or ordered atrocities, remain critical factors for sustainable peace in a country that has been plagued by conflict for so long.”
12. Med shot, delegates
13. SOUNDBITE (Arabic) Elmahdi S. Elmajerbi, Deputy Permanent Representative of Libya to the United Nations:
“We recognize that there is a delay in prosecuting and arresting the suspects, however this delay does not mean that the national judiciary is unwilling to prosecute and punish those who have committed crimes, rather it was imposed by the security situation witnessed by Libya; the same situation that has prevented the office of the ICC prosecutor to undertake its investigations within the Libyan territory.”
14. Wide shot, Security Council
STORYLINE
International Criminal Court (ICC) Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda reminded “each and every combatant engaged in fighting in Libya” that her Office remains seized of the situation in country, adding that, if their actions amount to war crimes or crimes against humanity, “they can be prosecuted.”

Addressing the Security Council today (08 Nov), Bensouda recalled reports which have emerged that 36 male corpses were found in the town of al-Abyar, 50 kilometers east of Benghazi. The bodies were reportedly handcuffed, showed signs of torture, and displayed bullet wounds to the head. She said if serious crimes under the Rome Statute continue to be committed in Libya, she “will not hesitate to bring new applications for warrants of arrest.” She stressed that these crimes “must stop.”

The Prosecutor said the security situation in Libya remains unstable with violent clashes occurring between various factions and reports of widespread human rights violations being perpetrated by different parties to the conflict. She also noted reports of “unlawful killings, including the execution of detained persons; kidnappings and forced disappearances; torture; prolonged detentions without trial or other legal process; and arbitrary detention, torture, rape, and other ill-treatment of migrants in official and unofficial detention centres.” Bensouda said she has instructed her Office to continue its inquiries into the alleged crimes against migrants transiting through Libya, adding that these crimes may fall with the ICC’s jurisdiction.

Bensouda told the Council that the ICC had issued an arrest warrant for Major Mahmoud Al-Werfalli in August. Al-Werfalli is the commander of the Al-Saiqa Brigade of the Libyan National Army (LNA) and is accused of war crimes in relation to six unlawful executions that allegedly took place in Benghazi between March and July this year. He is alleged to have ordered or personally committed the executions that resulted in the murder of 33 people. Bensouda emphasized that “irrespective of any reported domestic investigation” by the LNA into Al-Werfalli’s actions, Libya has a legal obligation to arrest and surrender him to the ICC to stand trial.

The ICC Prosecutor said, “Ensuring justice for victims of serious crimes perpetrated in Libya, and bringing to account those who have committed or ordered atrocities, remain critical factors for sustainable peace in a country that has been plagued by conflict for so long.”

Libyan ambassador Elmahdi Elmajerbi said his Government knows that it bears the primary responsibility to fight impunity and achieve justice and views the ICC as an important partner. He said Libya recognizes the delay in prosecuting and arresting suspects, however “this delay does not mean that the national judiciary is unwilling to prosecute and punish those who have committed crimes, rather it was imposed by the security situation witnessed by Libya; the same situation that has prevented the office of the ICC prosecutor to undertake its investigations within the Libyan territory.”

Elmajerbi called on the international community to help Libyn overcome its security situation through supporting efforts to unify its security institutions and build government institutions which can reinforce security and stability in the country.

The Libyan ambassador said his Government understands the Prosecutor’s concern over alleged crimes committed against migrants, however he called on the prosecutor to focus on the organized criminal groups in the countries of origin and destination who are trafficking these migrants. He said it is well know that Libya is witnessing an unstable security situation, adding that if these transnational criminal groups were stopped, the crimes and violations migrants face in transit countries like Libya would not happen.
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