Omar, McGovern, Castro Hail Repeal of Trump ICC Sanctions

April 2, 2021
Press Release

WASHINGTON—Today, Reps Ilhan Omar (D-MN), Jim McGovern (D-MA), and Joaquin Castro (D-TX) celebrated the repeal of sanctions on International Criminal Court (ICC) staff previously imposed by the Trump Administration.

In March, the three members sent a letter to Secretary of State Tony Blinken urging the move.

“This is a long overdue victory for international justice and the rule of law,” Rep. Omar said. “The staff of the International Criminal Courts are public servants who dedicate their life to enforcing the most heinous crimes imaginable. If we are to live up to our values of respect for human rights and democratic norms, United States should be leading the pursuit of international justice, not blocking it. I was proud to join Rep. McGovern and Castro in pushing for these sanctions to be lifted and authored a resolution encouraging the United States to finally join the vast majority of our closest allies as a full member of the Court. It is time for us to mean what we say and say what mean on human rights once and for all.”

“I welcome the president’s decision to lift the sanctions against ICC personnel that should never have been imposed in the first place,” Rep. McGovern said. “This is a necessary step towards restoring American credibility as a champion of human rights and accountability at home and abroad. In the future, I am confident that the Biden Administration’s commitment to constructive engagement with multilateral institutions will prove far more effective for U.S. interests than the bullying we saw from the last administration.”  

“I commend Secretary Blinken and the Biden administration for lifting the appalling Trump-era sanctions on the International Criminal Court,” Rep. Castro said. “The United States must lead on human rights around the world, not punish those who work to defend those rights. I thank Reps. Omar and McGovern for their leadership in defending the International Criminal Court, and will continue to work to build up and improve the international organizations tasked with defending human rights and upholding the rule of law around the world.”