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A regular online roundtable where experts from different perspectives discuss a pressing issue in international criminal justice.

Note: Analysis and commentary in Arguendo represent the views of the authors. It has not been approved by the House of Delegates or the Board of Governors of the American Bar Association and, accordingly, should not be construed as representing the position of the Association or any of its entities.

Arguendo Main

Revisited: What are the next steps in the US-ICC relationship?

While approaches to the US-ICC relationship have varied significantly among past US administrations, the imposition of travel and financial sanctions against ICC personnel during the Trump administration marked an unprecedented level of hostility. In contrast, the Biden administration has signaled an initial willingness to “engage with all stakeholders in the ICC process,” but has also reiterated past US objections to several ICC investigations. Significant challenges remain to improving the US-ICC relationship, including US domestic law that still impedes many aspects of assistance to the ICC institutionally, and several ICC investigations that impact the United States and its allies. There are also potential opportunities, such as the review process aimed at strengthening the ICC’s procedures and functioning, and the ICC’s ongoing role in many situations where the United States has also supported accountability for atrocity crimes.

Revisiting an Arguendo question first posed in 2014: What should the United States do next in this relationship, if anything, and why? And should the ICC do something from its side of the relationship?

Key Resources: 
American Society of International Law (ASIL) Task Force Report on Policy Options for U.S. Engagement with the ICC (2021)
International Criminal Court Project, Timeline of the US-ICC Relationship
Independent Expert Review of the International Criminal Court and the Rome Statute System Final Report (2020)

Dr. Priya Pillai

Time for a Clean Slate: Re-envisioning the US – ICC relationship

Betsy Apple

Beyond the ICC: Rebuilding the Scaffolding for International Justice with the United States

Stephen Rademaker

The ICC’s Fundamental Design Flaws Have Only Become More Evident

Honorable Richard J. Goldstone

Renewed US Support Can Strengthen International Justice

Professor Allen S. Weiner

A Strategic American Commitment to Accountability and the Rule of Law Includes the International Criminal Court

Honorable David Scheffer

A Renewed Agenda to Advance US Interests with the International Criminal Court