Association for Defending Victims of Terrorism – The International Centre of Justice for Palestinians (ICJP) has called on the UK government to refer Israel to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for war crimes committed in Palestine, and to recognize the court’s jurisdiction over the situation in the occupied Palestinian territories.
In a letter sent today to UK Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, and the Foreign Secretary James Cleverley, the ICJP called on Number 10 to urgently recognize that the ICC has jurisdiction in respect of the situation in Palestine, and for the UK as an ICC State Party to refer the situation and Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to the Court, pursuant to Article 14 of the ICC Statute.
Article 14 stipulates that a State Party may refer to the Prosecutor a situation in which one or more crimes within the jurisdiction of the Court appear to have been committed and calls on ICC Prosecutor to investigate the situation for the purpose of determining whether one or more specific persons should be charged with the commission of such crimes.
The letter refers to previous findings by ICC Prosecutor that there is a reasonable basis to believe that throughout the 2014 conflict in Gaza, Israeli forces committed a number of war crimes, including the targeting of medical personnel and equipment. The letter also refers to a number of submissions previously made to the ICC by the ICJP, in relation to the targeting of journalists and media infrastructure by Israeli forces, as well as the unlawful destruction of Palestinian homes in the neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah.
The letter mentioned that the previous ICC prosecutor concluded that there is reasonable basis to believe that, in the context of the 2014 hostilities in Gaza, members of the Israeli army committed war crimes. Citing the ICC prosecutor and countless UN reports, the ICJP said that there is “overwhelming evidence” to show Israel has committed war crimes.