Arab League urges ICC to investigate Israeli war crimes against Palestinians

Aya Salah , Tuesday 4 Jul 2023

The Council of the League of Arab States demanded that the International Criminal Court (ICC) fulfill its mandate by investigating crimes against humanity committed by Israel against the Palestinian people.

Israeli soldiers fire tear gas canisters from an armoured vehicle during an ongoing military operati
Israeli soldiers fire tear gas canisters from an armoured vehicle during an ongoing military operation in the occupied West Bank city of Jenin on July 4, 2023. AFP


These crimes include establishing and annexing illegal settlements, attacks on Palestinian cities, villages, and camps, killing civilians, journalists, and medical workers, and forced displacement, said the Arab League (AL) in a statement on Tuesday.

“The Arab League has also urged the court to study all available options to exercise its judicial jurisdiction in the occupied Palestinian territories and to provide all necessary human and material resources to conduct the investigation with the necessary priority,” read the statement. 

The statement was issued following an emergency meeting of the AL's permanent delegates on Tuesday to discuss the latest developments in Jenin, in the occupied West Bank. The death toll from Tuesday's events has now reached 10, as Palestinian casualties continue to rise.

The meeting comes at the request of Palestine in coordination with Egypt and Jordan, according to the Permanent Representative of Palestine to the AL, Muhannad Al-Aklouk. 

The council also demanded pressure on Israel from the international community to allow the Human Rights Council's ongoing Fact-Finding Mission, established on 21 May 2021, to enter the occupied Palestinian territories to investigate Israeli crimes directly.

Moreover, the council has urged all high contracting parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to assume their responsibilities and ensure the Convention's implementation in the occupied Palestinian territories by stopping Israeli violations of international humanitarian law and human rights law.

The council also demanded urgent action from Arab states through the Arab Ministerial Committee, tasked by the Arab summit to provide international protection for the Palestinian people, taking necessary steps to end the Israeli occupation and its aggressive policies against the Palestinian people.

Additionally, the council decided to arrange visits and direct, high-level joint and bilateral messages to UN Security Council members and international decision-making centres to implement international resolutions to stop all forms of Israeli violence against Palestinians. 

The statement noted that if the Security Council fails to fulfil its role and responsibilities in maintaining international peace and security, the UN General Assembly will resume the tenth emergency special session. 

According to the statement, the session titled “Uniting for Peace” will work on issuing resolutions to halt Israeli aggression against the Palestinians, implement relevant UN resolutions for their protection, and grant full UN membership to the State of Palestine. 

To this end, the council requested AL Secretary-General Ahmed Aboul Gheit to provide a report on the implementation of this resolution, to be reviewed at its next session.

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