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The U.S. formally rejected U.S. participation in May 2002. A main concern was that American servicemen hunting down terrorists abroad might not be safe from politically motivated prosecutions.
Clinton said it is "a great regret but it is a fact that we are not yet a signatory. But we have supported the court and continue to do so."
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton speaks as if the United States is the only country refusing to relinquish sovereignty by joining the International Criminal Court (ICC). However, out of 192 UN-member countries, roughly half (109) have agreed to join the ICC
Gary T. Dempsey commented on the matter:
The ICC will also become an unavoidable participant in the national legal process. Indeed, because it will set precedents regarding what it considers "effective" and "ineffective" domestic criminal trials, the ICC will indirectly force states to adopt those precedents or risk having cases called up before the international court. That constitutes an unprecedented change in the sources of national lawmaking, one that diminishes the traditional notion of state sovereignty.
The issue is not whether other forms of trial are legitimate; Americans are and should be subject to the criminal justice systems of whatever nation in which they are accused of crimes. The issue is whether the United States as a matter of policy should adopt, for the first time, one of those systems as party to an extra-national authority with power over anyone in the world. Our role should be to guarantee jury rights for the accused, not to give up and say that this protection is no longer fundamental because it's inconvenient in this new context.