South Africa Surprise UN Leadership by Announcing its Withdrawal from the International Criminal Court
South Africa has formally begun the process of withdrawing from the International Criminal Court (ICC), notifying the UN of its decision.
The government concluded that membership of the ICC created a conflict with its role as a regional peace broker.
Luis Moreno Ocampo, the former ICC chief prosecutor, pinpoints the moment when attitudes changed:
“I remember South Africa as a champion, it was leading the continent under Mandela and Mbeki… under President Zuma, it’s different,” he told the BBC.
“Who will stand for the African victims when leaders conduct massive atrocities to stay in power? Who will prevent Burundi from slipping into genocide? We’re slipping backwards”.
He accused many leaders on this continent of “hypocrisy” – claiming that publicly they vilify the ICC to appease their African Union allies, while privately supporting its ideals.