The International Criminal Court (ICC) is a permanent independent court which judges persons accused of the most severe crimes of concern to the international community, namely genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. The ICC was founded by virtue of a treaty signed by 105 States.
The ICC is a court of last instance. It does not intervene if and as long as a case is object of an enquiry or prosecution within a national judicial system with the exception that the procedures are not seriously conducted, for example if they are officially conducted to deprive a person of his penal responsibility. Furthermore, the ICC does only judge persons who are accused of having committed a severe crime as mentioned above.
Jurisdiction and functioning of the ICC are regulated by the Rome Statute.
The Court is competent for severe crimes committed on the territory or by nationals of a State Party.
Site of the International Criminal Court: www.icc-cpi.int/home.html
The Rome Statute of 1998: www.icc-cpi.int/library/about/officialjournal/Rome_Statute_English.pdf
The Court is competent to judge crimes committed on the territory or by the nationals of one of the following 30 African States (as of October 2009):
Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Chad, Central African Republic, Congo, Comoros, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Djibouti, Gabon, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritius, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Uganda, United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia.