Polity Notes


International Criminal Court is an intergovernmental organization and international tribunal located at The Hague (Netherlands). It was founded through ROME STATUTE and adopted on 17th July 1988 and entered into force on 1st July 2002.

Distinction between ICJ AND ICC

ICJ is an organ of United Nations that settles legal disputes between States whereas ICC is the first and only permanent international court with jurisdiction to investigate and where warranted prosecute individuals charged with the gravest international crimes of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and the crime of aggression.

The court aims to hold those responsible for their crimes and to help prevent these crimes from happening again. ICC Judges conduct judicial proceedings and ensure the fairness of proceedings.

Working Languages- English and French

Official Languages- Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish.

Member States- 123

Distinction between ICJ AND ICC


ICC has total of 18 judges. Tenure of a judge is 9 years (non-renewable). They elect among themselves the ICC President (just like Chief Justice) and two Vice Presidents (just like Deputy Chief Justice). The tenure of President and two Vice Presidents are Three Years (renewable).

ELECTION OF JUDGES - The ICC’s 18 judges are elected by the Assembly of State Parties for their qualification, impartiality and integrity. Every member country of ICC is also member of Assembly of State Parties. Each Member has 1 vote.


President - Judge Piotr Hofmanski (Polland)

First Vice President- Judge MS Luz Del Lbanez Carranza (Peru)

Second Vice President- Judge Antoine Mbe Mindua (Congo)


ICC serve as the ‘’court of last resort’’, the ICC complements existing national judicial systems and may exercise its jurisdiction only when national courts are unwilling or unable to prosecute criminals. It lacks universal territorial jurisdiction and may only investigate and prosecute crimes committed within member states, crimes committed by nationals of member states, or crimes in situations referred to the Court by the United Nations Security Council.

Is India a member of ICC?

India has neither signed nor ratified the ROME STATUTE of the ICC and thus is not a member of ICC because of following reasons:

• State Sovereignty

• National Interests

• Difficulty in collection of evidences.

India opposes the powers given to UNSC and non-inclusion of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction as weapons whose use would constitute a war crime. India wants no role for UNSC in deciding whether an act of aggression has taken place for the purposes of international crime of aggression.