Former ICC prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, pictured in the Hague, the Netherlands, in June
Luis Moreno-Ocampo, the International Criminal Court's former prosecutor, on Friday said that world leaders had a "good case" for asking NATO to prepare a warrant to arrest Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. © Roel Rozenburg - ANP/AFP/File
Former ICC prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo, pictured in the Hague, the Netherlands, in June
AFP
Last updated: November 10, 2012

NATO could arrest Assad in Syria, says ex-ICC prosecutor

Luis Moreno-Ocampo, the International Criminal Court's former prosecutor, said that world leaders had a "good case" for asking NATO to prepare a warrant to arrest Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.

Moreno-Ocampo, an Argentine lawyer who was the ICC's first prosecutor, said given "it was absolutely clear" that as Syria's commander-in-chief Assad's forces had killed civilians, NATO could execute such a warrant.

He told Canadian broadcaster CBC such a warrant, carried out by both international and Syrian forces, was "one possible solution to the problem" of Assad, but the world community must first reach a consensus on Syria.

"We can have a new, more innovative approach, combining justice and a real effort to implement the warrant and then (have) negotiations at the same time," Moreno-Ocampo told CBC on Friday, as long as Assad had the presumption of innocence.

Such a move would force Assad to negotiate, the former judge said, and possibly achieve a breakthrough in the near 20-month uprising, but he noted that the shadow of "regime change" hung over world leaders, noting that the protection of civilians was the official reason for NATO intervention in Libya.

In the end, however, Colonel Moamer Kadhafi was ousted from power following international military action.

Moreno-Ocampo, who left the ICC earlier this year, said he was not in favor of military action in Syria, noting it "was not a good idea."

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