Oct 21 2004
Turkey set to sign up for International Criminal Court
PARIS, Oct 21 (AFP) – Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan
announced late Wednesday that his country would sign and ratify the
Rome statute that created the International Criminal Court, which
rules on war crimes and crimes against humanity.
“Turkey will sign and ratify the Rome statute” that created the ICC,
Erdogan said during a debate organised by France’s Institute for
Almost 100 countries have ratified the Rome treaty, which established
the court in July 1998, excluding the United States, which opposes
The court, headquartered in The Hague, began operating in July 2002.
The ICC is mandated to try genocide, crimes against humanity and war
During the debate, Erdogan urged France to back Turkey’s bid for EU
He also stressed Turkey’s historical line that there had been no
genocide of Armenians under the Ottoman Empire during World War One.
Turkey categorically rejects claims of genocide and says that between
250,000 and 500,000 Armenians were killed in civil strife when the
Armenians rose up against their Ottoman rulers.
“Those who claim there was an Armenian genocide have not had the
opportunity to study the Ottoman archives,” he said.
“If they had then they would see a very different picture,” he added.
In 2001 the parliament in France, which has a sizeable Armenian
minority, passed a law recognising the Armenian genocide.