Where I may have fallen short, I can assure you, it was not for lack of trying, Fatou Bensouda says in her last address as the prosecutor at the ICC .
In an address to the United Nations Security Council on Wednesday, Bensouda said her nine year stint at the ICC was never easy.
The Gambian-born Bensouda will retire in June. British lawyer Karim Khan will be the new prosecutor starting June 16.
Bensouda prosecuted the ICC case involving President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Deputy William Ruto. Khan led Ruto’s defence.
“It has certainly not been easy, but with your support, we have stayed the course and have tried to bring to life the goals and values of the Rome Statute,” Bensouda said.
“I have indeed come to the end of my mandate with the Court and as the saying goes, “I gave it my best shot”, empowered by my dedicated team across my Office. I seize the opportunity to salute them here.”
She said the work of the Office on behalf of international justice, and by extension, sustainable peace, will continue without pause.
“Led by my sense of duty and pragmatic idealism, I truly believe that together, with the support of the international community and this august body, a more secure and just future for all is attainable. It merely takes the trinity of courage, leadership and genuine conviction in higher ideals,” she said.
She urged the Council to fight against impunity for atrocity crimes in close cooperation with the ICC.
“I can only encourage continued engagement and cooperation between two institutions so crucial to a rules-based international system and the cause of peaceful settlement of disputes,” she said.