Moroccan minister rules out accession to ICC in near future

Morocco’s Minister of State for Human Rights, Mustafa Al-Ramid, ruled out on Tuesday that the current government would approve its membership of the International Criminal Court (ICC) any time soon.

“The current government does not consider joining the ICC,” Al-Ramid told a press conference in the capital Rabat. “We cannot approve of joining this court in the near future because the conditions have not yet matured enough.”

He added that this does not rule out Morocco from accession to the ICC at a later stage. “We could do this when circumstances change and when we do not have a national problem.” This was a reference to the Kingdom’s dispute over Western Sahara.

According to the minister, some African countries which are members of the ICC want to withdraw from it. “The International Criminal Court seems to have been established with the hope of prosecuting criminals who cannot be prosecuted by national courts or brought before them, but now you can see and can judge it.”

Mr Al-Ramid promised to open a national dialogue on the subject. Moroccan human rights organisations and activists have been demanding that their country ratify the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

Read:Morocco and the International Criminal Court, balancing national and international law

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