On 9 March, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, Bert Koenders, held a speech on the UN resolution establishing the International, Impartial and Independent Mechanism (IIIM) for Syria. Addressing the efforts of Syrian citizens to gather evidence about human rights violations committed during the Syrian conflict, Koenders praised the brave and selfless acts of those who are risking their lives to bring the truth about these offenses to light.
Koenders called on governments, NGOs and legal experts to commit to the Mechanism and to gather political and financial support in order to enable perpetrators to be brought to justice.
He echoed the words of Stephen Rapp, distinguished fellow at the Hague Institute for Global Justice and former US Ambassador-at-Large for War Crimes. “Commenting on Syria, [Ambassador Rapp] said, ‘When the day of justice arrives, we’ll have much better evidence than we’ve had anywhere since Nuremberg’.” Koenders then added,
“If we can make the International, Impartial and Independent Mechanism work, we can use that evidence to build air-tight cases against those guilty of the worst crimes imaginable. If we can make the Mechanism work, justice will be one step closer.”