RESOLUTION ON TRANSNATIONAL FUGITIVE OFFENDERS

    1. Recalling that the concept of rule of law forms a cornerstone of the OSCE's human rights and democratization activities and does not only describe formal legal frameworks, but also aims at justice based on the full acceptance of human dignity,
    2. Recognizing that globalization and increased contact across borders bring benefits to our societies in the form of increased understanding of other peoples and cultures, increased trade opportunities and more integrated economies,
    3. Noting also that globalization and increased people-to-people contact, although fundamentally positive, may lead to an increased number of criminal acts being committed by citizens and organizations from one country against citizens and organizations of another country,
    4. Recognizing that international law and bilateral agreements have come a long way in tackling many of the judicial problems and challenges that may occur as a result of this increased contact, in the form of international conventions, international tribunals, extradition agreements, agreements on transfer of sentenced persons and other agreements,
    5. Noting nevertheless that the proper investigation of some crimes committed by citizens of one country against citizens of another country is made difficult and in some cases impossible due to the absence of relevant agreements between the two countries, such as a bilateral extradition agreement,
    6. Worried that the lack of appropriate international legal tools may cause situations where the likely perpetrator of serious criminal acts, a so-called transnational fugitive offender, seeks refuge in his/her home country, which may be unwilling to investigate the case or prosecute the individual in question, or unwilling to extradite the individual to the country where the criminal act was committed,
    7. Concerned that the failure to properly investigate serious criminal acts runs contrary to the fundamental principle of rule of law, to which all OSCE participating States adhere, and which is upheld as a prerequisite for democracy and good governance all around the world, and calls on also that the continued failure to properly investigate such acts may result in de facto impunity for the perpetrators,
    8. Bearing in mind that lack of proper investigation of serious crimes and impunity effectively undermine the rule of law and erode citizens' trust in fundamental institutions of society,
    9. Determined to explore new avenues to fill a lacuna in international law and pave the way for proper investigations of serious criminal acts committed by transnational fugitive offenders, with the ultimate objective of creating justice for the victims and those left behind,

The OSCE Parliamentary Assembly:

    1. Encourages participating States, in instances where two or more States are involved in a case concerning a crime committed by a transnational fugitive offender and where the absence of an extradition agreement may complicate the handling of the case, to voluntarily enter into an agreement on the questions of extradition and of the country where the investigations, prosecution or trial should take place, with due respect paid to the legal systems of the involved countries;
    2. Calls upon participating States, in the longer term, to study the possibility of establishing an independent and impartial International Legal Authority for deciding extradition, investigation and prosecution concerning transnational fugitive offenders, in co-operation with the International Criminal Court (ICC).