Today, 23 June 2020, the Presidency, in consultation with the Judges of the International Criminal Court (ICC), published ‘Guidelines for the Judiciary Concerning the Holding of Court Hearings during the COVID-19 Pandemic’ (‘Guidelines’) on the Court’s website in both English and French. While the responsibility for the fair and expeditious conduct of proceedings rests with each Chamber vested of a case or situation, the Court has adopted common guidelines to ensure the physical safety of staff and users during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Guidelines are facilitative and non-binding, aiming to provide clarity on the Court’s approach to holding hearings in Court proceedings during the COVID-19 Pandemic. The Guidelines emphasise that the applicable Chamber may decide independently whether required hearings should be conducted physically, remotely or as a combination of both. A Chamber should consider the rights and protections guaranteed in the Rome Statute and the Rules of Procedure and Evidence, as well as giving due consideration to the situations and restrictions in states where parties or participants in the hearings are located.read more