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Khulumani to participate in critical panel to inform the engagement of victims with the International Criminal Court, The Hague, April 24 - 27, 2013

Khulumani's National Director, Dr Marjorie Jobson will be participating in a panel of experts aimed at strengthening victims' participation before the International Criminal Court (ICC) to ensure that participation is effective and meaningful for victims.

The panel of eight to ten individual experts, representing a range of disciplines and experiences on victims' rights in different contexts, will meet in The Hague from 24-27 April 2013.

It will consider key challenges that the ICC currently faces in realizing the rights of victims to participate in proceedings and identify guiding principles as well as clear and realistic recommendations for improving the system.

The panel is being convened at a critical moment for the future of victims' participation before the ICC. The ICC is facing real difficulties in administering growing numbers of applications amid increasing criticism that the current system is not meaningful for victims and adds little to the justice process.

In 2012, the Assembly of States Parties (Assembly) encouraged the ICC to review the system of victim participation with a view to ensuring its sustainability, effectiveness and efficiency. Its progress will be considered at the next session of the Assembly in November 2013 during a new agenda item on victims and affected communities.

While the Registry and the judges are currently considering the best way forward and states parties are also discussing the issue, these processes have not yet benefited from the input of experts with comparative experiences on victim issues. It is hoped that this panel will fill this important gap.

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