The EU Foreign Ministers agreed on 30 September that Member States can conclude bilateral agreements with the United States to give American officials and soldiers immunity from the International Criminal Court.
Any bilateral agreements with the US must respect a number of conditions, set by the EU Foreign Ministers on 30 September:
- they will apply only to American officials or soldiers sent abroad;
- the US must agree to prosecute Americans accused of war crimes and crimes against humanity in US courts;
- there will be no reciprocity, so that EU citizens are not granted immunity in the US.
The candidate countries for EU membership will also be able to conclude bilateral immunity deals with the US under these conditions. They have come under pressure from the US to give American peacekeepers immunity from the ICC, but the EU has warned the candidates not to sign any agreements with the US before the EU has taken its position on the issue. Romania has already signed a deal with the US, but has withheld its ratification under EU pressure.