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The ICC will likely throw out Palestine’s case for war crimes, Norman Finkelstein says

Philip Weiss on

Norman Finkelstein says that the International Criminal Court crossed a “Rubicon” when it announced a formal investigation of Israeli war crimes in Gaza and its ongoing settlement project, but that the ICC will likely use a technicality, that Palestine has no standing as a state, to throw out the case. The real battle will be in public opinion, and the case may help force the reckoning inside the Democratic Party.

ICC moves on Palestine investigation – yet drags its feet

Jonathan Ofir on

International Criminal Court Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda surely felt compelled to announce an investigation of Israel’s conduct in the occupation so as not to appear to be completely failing her job, but her referral of a “question” concerning the “territory” under jurisdiciton to a “Pre-trial Chamber” of the court risks dragging this process out by months, maybe even years.

Dutch NGO appeals to ‘passive’ ICC: open investigation into Israeli war crimes

Yumna Patel on

The Rights Forum, an organization “committed to a fair and sustainable Dutch and European policy on the Palestine/Israel issue,” announced earlier this week that it was delivering its appeal with the support of 185 organizations from 25 countries. “Without further delay, investigate possible war crimes committed in Israeli-occupied Palestinian territory,” the group said in their appeal, which they delivered to Chief ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda at The Hague on Tuesday.

ICC responds to Trump administration threats: ‘the court will continue to do its work undeterred’

Kate on

In response to threats by the United States National Security Adviser John Bolton, the International Criminal Court in Hague said, on Tuesday, that it is an independent and impartial institution with the backing of 123 countries. The statement added that “the ICC, as a court of law, will continue to do its work undeterred, in accordance with those principles and the overarching idea of the rule of law.”

Palestinian appeal to ICC seen as last hope to ‘bring justice for the victims’ of Israeli violations

Sheren Khalel on

Four Palestinian human rights organizations submitted their fourth “substantive communication” to the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court. The 700-page evidence file submitted alleges that high-level Israeli civilian and military officials have committed “war crimes and crimes against humanity” in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem. Tahseer Alayyan, a spokesperson for the Ramallah-based independent Palestinian human rights NGO, al-Haq, told Mondoweiss that the NGOs believe the ICC is the “only remaining window” for Palestinians to “bring justice for the victims” of Israeli violations.

ICC rules prosecutor to reconsider ‘Mavi Marmara’ investigation

Annie Robbins on

In a 2-1 decision, judges of the International Criminal Court (ICC) ruled that Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda committed “material errors” in her “Decision Not to Investigate” war crimes complaints concerning the murderous Israeli raid on the Mavi Marmara, killing 9 humanitarian aid workers in May 2010,

Exclusive: Palestine seeks to charge Israel with ‘apartheid’ and war crimes at The Hague

Allison Deger on

Palestinian leaders seek to charge Israel with the crime of “Apartheid,” and 22 other charges including seven war crimes, according to Shawan Jabarin, the director of the Palestinian human rights group Al Haq. The thick set documents were ceremoniously handed over to the International Criminal Court (ICC) today at headquarters in The Hague, yet yesterday morning Jabarin was given exclusive access to the report in Ramallah.

Ros-Lehtinen removes pro-Palestinian activists from Congressional hearing on punishing PA for joining ICC

Sam Knight on

On Wednesday the House Foreign Affairs subcommittee convened a hearing on cutting off aid to the Palestinian Authority in response to joining the International Criminal Court. The hearing panel was staffed exclusively by neoconservatives—three out of four of whom have written about Palestinian children as constituting a “demographic threat” to the Jewish state. Citizens concerned about human rights in Israel/Palestine packed the hearing to represent the growing number of Americans who object to the US government’s one-sided diplomatic and military support for Israel. Subcommittee chairperson Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) was not amused.

US calls ICC decision to investigate Gaza ‘tragic irony’

Philip Weiss on

It’s a “tragic irony” that Israel which has withstood thousands of terrorist rockets is to be investigated by the International Criminal Court, the US State Department says, fulfilling its role as the defender of the Jewish state

Despite punitive Israeli tax freeze, Palestinians to pursue war crimes charges with Arab League financial help

Allison Deger on

Within days of Palestinians announcing they would join the International Criminal Court (ICC), Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced his country would stop transferring customs revenue to the Palestinian Authority. The punitive move was expected to lead to a crisis for the Palestinian leadership as government services would collapse across the West Bank. But the Palestinian Authority had an unexpected back up plan. The Arab League has agreed to provide emergency funds to cover the VAT-taxes frozen by Israel. This Arab League safety net will help the Palestinians avoid the expected temporary bankruptcy and allow them to move forward with pressing for war crimes at the ICC. In fact, financial support from the Arab League was a key component, along with joining the ICC, of long-term strategy to pressure Israel into negotiations.

Pro-Israel Congress members threaten aid cut-off in response to Palestinian ICC bid

Alex Kane on

In response to the Palestinian bid to join the International Criminal Court, pro-Israel members of Congress are threatening to cut off U.S. aid to the Palestinian Authority. The U.S. gives the PA about $500 million annually, and U.S. law states most of it will be cut off if the PA initiates an investigation targeting Israel at the ICC. But analysts say that it is unlikely the U.S. will, in fact, cut off aid, since it would be a blow to the PA’s economic standing and could destabilize the authority’s rule.

ICC believes Israel may have committed war crimes in flotilla attack, but not of ‘sufficient gravity’ to justify formal investigation

Annie Robbins on

Today, International Criminal Court Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda announced the body will not be prosecuting Israel for the deadly attack on humanitarian passengers of the Mavi Marmara although she has reason to believe that war crimes were committed by Israel. In a statement Bensouda said the case is not “of ‘sufficient gravity’ to justify further action.”