The newly elected Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), Fatou Bensouda, has been awarded an honorary degree by Middlesex University London in recognition of her work in international law and human rights.
Fatou Bensouda is the first female and first African Chief Prosecutor of the ICC, previously fulfilling the role of Deputy Prosecutor since 2004. Other high profile positions include working at the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and as Chief Legal Advisor to the President and Cabinet of The Republic of The Gambia.
Listed by Time magazine as among the 100 most influential people in the world, she has also been named by a leading African magazine as the 4th most Influential personality in Africa, in the Civil Society Category.
Fatou Bensouda said: “I see the degree as recognition, not only for my personal achievements, but more importantly for those of the International Criminal Court and the Office of the Prosecutor. The International Criminal Court grew from a groundbreaking idea on paper in 1998 in Rome, to an undisputed reality in the international arena today.”
Her passion for human rights has also led her to be involved in the Organisation of African Unity’s Ministerial Meetings on Human Rights, meetings of the Preparatory Commission for the International Criminal Court and United Nations’ conferences on crime prevention.
Middlesex University Vice-Chancellor Michael Driscoll said: “Mrs Bensouda’s recent appointment as the ICC’s Chief Prosecutor demonstrates her standing in the international community and she will be a great inspiration to the next generation of lawyers who graduated alongside her today. Middlesex is very proud of our own work in international and human rights law so it’s pleasing to honour such an influential figure who is making her own huge contribution in this field.”
Mrs Bensouda collected the honorary degree at a ceremony at the University’s Hendon campus in north London on 16 July.
The award was made as part of the University’s annual graduation celebrations, with honorary degrees presented to people who have made an outstanding contribution to their profession or community. Last year Middlesex University also presented human rights campaigner and Director of Liberty Shami Chakrabarti with an honorary degree.