Crime of Aggression
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Remarks by the Prime Minister of the Independent State of Samoa on Samoa's Ratification of the Kampala Amendments on the crime of aggression.

Hon. Tuilaepa Fatialofa Lupesoliai Sailele Malielegaoi
Prime Minister of the Independent State of Samoa
Samoa's Ratification of the Kampala Amendments
to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court
New York, 25 September 2012

Madam Under-Secretary-General for Legal Affairs and United Nations Legal Counsel,
Madame President of the Assembly of State Parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court,
Friends of Samoa,
Ladies and Gentlemen.

It is very gracious of all of you to join me in today's ceremony.

It is a momentous occasion and a high point in Samoa's relationship with the International Criminal Court. This event, taking place immediately on the heels of yesterday's High-level meeting on the "Rule of Law" is a clear demonstration that pledges can indeed be turned into implementable commitments when there is political will. It is also a re-assurance that all national efforts, big or small count to help strengthen the rule of law at the international level.

Samoa is not a member of any military grouping and has no aspirations to become one. We do so because we place great faith in the rule of law and the vital protection that the law offers to all States, especially to the weak and small. From this perspective, we consider the International Criminal Court one of the most important developments in the affairs of the international community in the struggle against impunity and in the establishment of an international permanent Court with ability to respond to serious crimes like genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. This was the motivation that was behind our decision to ratify the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court ten years ago this month.

Samoa was actively represented at Rome and Kampala and in the Special Working Group on the Crime of Aggression. Our own Tuiloma Neroni Slade, who is with us, was elected one of the first judges on the Court, an office which he filled with great distinction.

We have no illusions that the Court can prosecute more than a handful of cases ayear, but we are confident that what we have witnessed in the past two decades is a frontal assault on the pervasive climate of impunity that has reigned since the Tokyo and Nuremburg Trials.

It is important to us, therefore, that the two (2) Kampala Amendments that we ratify today take forward the two pieces of unfinished business from Rome, the application of criminal law, as established in Nuremburg and Tokyo to the scourge of aggression, and the prohibition of the use of certain weapons in non-international as well as international armed conflict.

Thank you.

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Crime of Aggression
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