MAE hosts international conference “Towards an International Court against Terrorism?”. Aurescu: An International Court against Terrorism would have a prevention and deterrence role

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An International Court against Terrorism would have a role of prevention but also of deterrence, the fight against this global threat being not “only a legal obligation of every state, but also the obligation of the international community as a whole”, presidential adviser Bogdan Aurescu (photo C) stated on Thursday.

In the beginning of the international conference “Towards an International Court against Terrorism?”, Aurescu recalled that at the beginning of 2015, Romania launched a process of reflection referred to the possibility of establishing a new international criminal court against terrorism. Spain joined the initiative, participating at the joint demarches on promoting the bilateral and multilateral level, and the Netherlands offered support on the technical level.

“Terrorism is not only one of the most atrocious crimes, but also a global challenge and so it should be approached”, the Presidential Advisor emphasized.

In his opinion, “An International Court against Terrorism would have a role of prevention but also of deterrence.” “Judging terrorists in the international courts would give assurances that such trials are correct”, he added.

Likewise, Bogdan Aurescu sketched what he called “architecture” of such an international court. “The new court will be based on the principle of complementarity and subsidiarity with the national jurisdictions”, the presidential adviser adding that “the ideal mechanism” for establishing such an organism would be “an international treaty (…) that could be negotiated under the auspices of the United Nations.”

“Maybe some will say that this project is difficult to be achieved, that it raises multiple questions, concerning politics, legislation, funding. But what project of such an amplitude is easy to be achieved? It took decades to establish the International Criminal Court in the Hague”, Aurescu added. “We must realize that, together we can do more thing, better things, than when acting individually. (…) We do not fight against force by force, but also by values, by the value of international law”, he emphasized.

“The fight against terrorism is not only a legal obligation of every state, but also the obligation of the international community as a whole”, the presidential adviser concluded.

In his turn, the Ambassador of Spain in Romania, Ramiro Fernandez Bachiller, talked about the terrorist attacks in his country, including the one that took place in Madrid, on March 11, 2004, when 193 people died, among which 16 Romanians.

“The expansion of the terrorist groups and increase of the level of atrocities’ and attacks created the necessity for implication of the international community to be higher”, stated the diplomat, adding that the Romanian-Spanish initiative “acknowledges the transnational dimension of terrorism.” “Every country has the obligation to fight against terrorism, but there is, in the same measure, the responsibility of the international community to use all the tools of the international law to combat the phenomenon”, he underscored.

In his opinion, an International Court against Terrorism “would add credibility, legitimacy, neutrality and independence.”

“Romania and Spain are open to discuss the details of this demarche”, he underscored.

Danut Neculaescu, State Secretary in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MAE), talked on the transformation of the terrorist phenomenon across time.

“The message sent to the public across the world is that no state is immune and no place is safe. (…) No country can confront this challenge alone”, he specified.

According to the State Secretary in the MAE, the initiative of an International Court “fills a gap”. “We are conscious of the fact that an international court is not a miraculous solution, but it fills a gap, putting in action the tools of the international law and adds credibility, by the global conviction of the terrorist act”, Neculaescu adds.

The event on Thursday, that will run the whole day, features debates between representatives of the international academic environment, with rich experience in the area, members of the local diplomatic community and governmental experts. The conference aims at the contribution in sketching the most suitable approaches on the international level for making more efficient the fight against terrorist phenomenon, regardless of the form of manifestation.

The event is organized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs together with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Cooperation of the Kingdom of Spain and the International Association of Penal Law.