Us Bilateral Immunity Agreements
The Bush administration has waged a vigorous campaign to close BIAs to remove U.S. citizens from the court of law. By the end of his term, the Bush administration had concluded with more than 100 nations, the last with Montenegro on April 19, 2007. The government asserted that these agreements met the requirements of Section 98, paragraph 2 of the Rome Statute of the ICC: Although the United States has stated that it is not exerting any pressure on states to sign non-capitulation agreements, some US government officials have stated that a state`s lack of willingness to sign has affected US support for NATO membership and has resulted in a reduction in US military aid. While some officials have argued that the government is required by the American Servicemembers` Protection Act (ASPA) to deprive state parties of military assistance that do not enter into such agreements, State Department Deputy Spokesman Philip T. Reeker acknowledged that the ASPA “does not prevent the United States from providing military assistance to a country if the president finds that such assistance is important to national interests.” Media, foreign officials and non-governmental organizations reported that threats had been made against small countries to stop non-military aid. At the request of the U.S. military, these sanctions were subsequently lifted. U.S. BIAs are inconsistent with Section 98, paragraph 2 of the Statute, as these agreements cover a broader list of individuals, including current or former government officials, military employees or nationals of a contracting party, and even U.S.
nationals who previously work or have worked for the U.S. government. The U.S. BIAs do not fall within the scope of section 98, paragraph 2, in two respects. First, such agreements apply to all U.S. citizens and not to government officials. Second, these agreements do not guarantee adequate investigation and prosecution. U.s.. BiAs are rather agreements of impunity. These agreements do not require the United States to investigate them and, if there is sufficient evidence, to prosecute those who have committed international crimes within the ICC`s jurisdiction. In these agreements, the United States expresses its intention to investigate persons who have “if any” committed international crimes. The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe also recommended the inclusion of appropriate provisions in the BIAs, so that those who have committed crimes under the ICC`s jurisdiction do not go unpunished.
Researchers are often interested in whether there is an immunity agreement between the United States and another country. This guide lists the Article 98 agreements in existing Thomas.gov contracts and all the additional agreements published in the latest edition of the treaty measures. The full text of the agreements was published by the U.S. State Department`s Reporting International Agreements to Congress under Case Act website. They are listed by country and all documents are in pdf format. According to the ICC`s unprecedented ruling, the legal status of bilateral U.S. Immunity Agreements (“BIAs”) would be of considerable importance in the future and further review. Also known as Article 98 of the agreement. Article 98, paragraph 2 of the Rome Statute of the ICC (`status`) is an international agreement between the United States and other states in which it agrees to cede a wide range of U.S. citizens to the United States.