Gazan Palestinians Enter Israel, Set Fire To IDF Outpost

by Steven Clarke May 23, 2018, 0:35
Gazan Palestinians Enter Israel, Set Fire To IDF Outpost

Israel is not a member of the ICC however, and the Israeli foreign ministry on Tuesday said it "takes a severe view" of the referral, which it called "a cynical step without legal validity". The foreign minister emphasized on an investigation alleging that grave crimes are being committed by Israel against the Palestinian people.

The minister met with ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda this morning a week after more than 60 Palestinians were killed by Israeli fire as they took part in unarmed protests along the Gaza-Israel border fence.

"This referral is Palestine's test to the worldwide mechanism of accountability and respect for global law", he added.

Still, Malki insisted that going to the ICC could become a building block for peace.

The meeting at the ICC comes amid heightened tensions in the Israel-Palestinian conflict, after more than 60 Palestinians protesting the United States decision to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to the disputed city of Jerusalem were killed by Israeli fire last week.

The referral will include Israel's past, present and future war crimes and crimes against humanity against the Palestinian people.

In a summary report of the court's activities for 2017, the ICC said it had progressed in its work to determine "whether there is a reasonable basis to proceed with an investigation".

The Referral could speed up a decision on whether to open a full-blown investigation that could ultimately lead to the indictment of high-ranking Israelis, The Washington Post reported.

The referral sought an investigation into Israeli policies in the West Bank, east Jerusalem and Gaza Strip since the state of Palestine accepted the ICC's jurisdiction in 2014, he said. In theory, that means Israelis could be tried by the ICC for alleged crimes committed on occupied territory.

Israel has said it was defending its border and accused Gaza's ruling Hamas militant group of using the unrest to carry out attempted attacks and of using civilians as human shields.

While the ICC can indict suspects, it has no police force and has to rely on cooperation from member states to enforce arrest warrants.

Under the court's rules, any member can request an investigation.

A four-ship Freedom Flotilla has set sail for the Gaza Strip to challenge Israel's decade-old blockade of the besieged territory. Security Council also declared the settlements to be illegal.

Israel has been building settler units across the West Bank, including East Jerusalem (al-Quds), since 1967, when it occupied the territory during an all-out war.

Israel claims east Jerusalem as an inseparable part of its capital - though its annexation is not worldwide recognized. Israel captured both territories from Jordan in the 1967 Mideast war.

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