The environmentalists have reason to rejoice. The International Criminal Court announced on Thursday that it is extending its scope of action to include environmental crimes. From now on, the Court in The Hague will be able to judge not only crimes against humanity but also those related to "the illicit exploitation of natural resources, the unlawful appropriation of land and the destruction of the environment".
Ahe Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Fatou Bensouda, issued a statement on Thursday, September 15, in which she stated that the document policy on "prioritization of cases". This text extends the jurisdiction of the Court to crimes involving or resulting in It is also a "cause of ecological devastation, illegal exploitation of natural resources or illegal exploitation of land".. »
This decision is described as historic by human rights and environmental activists. According to the NGO Global Witness, millions of people have been evicted from their land around the world. Indignation continues to grow about these rural communities evicted from their land, which is then sold to agricultural or mining companies, among others.
Gillian Caldwell, the director of the NGO says: " This decision shows that the age of impunity is coming to an end. Business leaders and politicians complicit in the expropriation of land, the destruction of tropical forests or the pollution of water sources could soon find themselves on trial in The Hague, alongside war criminals and dictators. "
This decision is a considerable deterrent to companies or politicians who have so far engaged in practices leading to environmental disasters with impunity. « No Western company wants to be accused of crimes against humanity by obtaining mining concessions in Asia or Africa. "said Richard Rogers, a lawyer who has filed a complaint with the court about similar alleged crimes in Cambodia, to AFP.
Helen Brady of the Hague court said that "this decision transforms the ICC into a true international court for the 21st century. She added: "This decision transforms the ICC into a true international court for the 21st century. It sends a powerful message "that should be heard by "the guilty wannabes". ".
Valérie Cabanes is a lawyer specializing in international humanitarian law and human rights and is active in the global citizen movement. End Ecocide on Earth for international recognition of the ecocide. She's reacting to this " incredible news » : « Are we seeing a dream come true, international environmental and climate justice being achieved? This is a huge breakthrough for human rights... Let's celebrate. "