“France will remain mobilized for a stable, secure and independent residence (…)
Thank you, Madam President.
I would like to thank Attorney General Khan for his report and presentation. We are pleased that this offer can be made by the Public Prosecutor from Tripoli, which reflects the Court’s desire to increase its presence on the ground. We also welcome the presence of the Permanent Representative of Libya.
Let me begin by recalling that the Permanent Criminal Court with a global mission is more necessary than ever to bring to justice the perpetrators of the most serious crimes and to break cycles of violence at work in many crisis situations. The International Criminal Court is the pillar of the fight against impunity at the international level. It plays an essential role within the multilateral system.
France reaffirms its full support for the Court, which must be able to act independently and impartially within the framework established by the Rome Statute. The Public Prosecutor’s Office must be able to exercise its powers without hindrance or obstruction. We welcome the fact that a large number of States parties to the Rome Statute have recently referred to this to the General Assembly.
With regard to the implementation of Security Council Resolution 1970, France reminds that the fight against impunity is one of the essential elements in conflict resolution and reconciliation between the Libyan parties. Prosecuting and convicting criminals is essential to the national reconciliation process and a successful political transition, which requires restoring trust between individuals and toward institutions. To this end, the full cooperation of all stakeholders is crucial. The deaths of alleged perpetrators of the most serious crimes cannot be considered justice for the victims.
We welcome the implementation by the Office of the Prosecutor in recent months of the revised investigation strategy presented in April 2022. In particular, France welcomes the increase and effective distribution of resources, as well as efforts to engage victims, witnesses and affected communities. We particularly note the increase in the number of specialized staff dedicated to the investigation in Libya or the increase in field visits, as evidenced by the visit of the Deputy Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Ms. Nozha Shamim Khan, to Tripoli in June 2022.
We also note UNHCR’s efforts to enhance and improve cooperation with the Libyan authorities, which, as the report notes, remain incomplete. We strongly encourage the Libyan authorities to cooperate fully with the Office of the Prosecutor, in particular with regard to obtaining documents necessary for investigations or issuing visas requested by the Office of the Prosecutor.
The most serious crimes committed in Libya since 2011 must be investigated and prosecuted, including crimes committed by ISIS, crimes committed in Tarhuna, and crimes against migrants and refugees. The assistance provided to the Office of the Prosecutor by international and regional organizations, as well as representatives of civil society present in Libya, is invaluable. In this regard, we welcome cooperation with the United Nations Mission in Liberia and European Police.
We remain deeply concerned about arbitrary arrests and inhumane conditions of detention. The authorities responsible for the relevant places of detention must open them to international monitors and investigators without delay. The cases of enforced disappearances and sexual violence reported by the Office are similarly unacceptable. Migrants and refugees are particularly vulnerable to these human rights abuses by militias and traffickers. Anyone who instigates or commits such crimes today is liable to prosecution. Combating human trafficking remains a priority for France.
France is also concerned about the increasing repression against civil society and human rights defenders, as well as the pressure on judges and lawyers, which goes against respect for the rule of law and impedes any consolidation of the democratic system in Libya.
In conclusion, Madam President,
France will remain zealous for a stable, secure, independent, sovereign and united Libya. The full implementation of the 2020 Ceasefire Agreement is essential to respecting human rights and achieving sustainable stability in the country. The continued presence of foreign forces, mercenaries, and illegal militias fuels violence and impunity. In this context, we fully support the mediation led by the United Nations, under the auspices of Special Representative Abdullah Bathili, in order to reach a viable solution to the Libyan conflict, which requires the formation of a unified executive body capable of governing throughout the country. The country and all Libyans. The promise to the Libyan people of transparent, credible and inclusive nationwide presidential and parliamentary elections must finally be fulfilled. Elections are the only way to re-establish lasting and indisputable political legitimacy.
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