US, March 5, 2021 (The inside Palestine) – A US congresswoman Thursday slammed US administration’s decision to oppose ICC probe Israeli war crimes against the Palestinian people.
Congresswomen Rashida Tlaib defended the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) prosecutor Fatou Bensouda’s decision to launch a probe into war crimes in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.
The ICC “has the authority and duty to independently and impartially investigate and deliver justice to victims of human rights violations and war crimes in Palestine and Israel,” the first Palestinian American elected to Congress tweeted.
“The U.S. should not interfere with its ability to do so,” she insisted.
Tlaib’s rebuke of the US opposition to the ICC probe came in response to US Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s remarks expressing firm opposition to such a probe.
“The United States firmly opposes an International Criminal Court investigation into the Palestinian Situation,” he tweeted while vowing to “continue to uphold our strong commitment to Israel and its security, including by opposing actions that seek to target Israel unfairly.”
Blinken was not the only US official to oppose ICC probe of possible war crimes in the occupied Palestinian territories, as he was joined by US Vice President Kamala Harris.
In a phone call with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday, Harris and Netanyahu noted their governments’ “opposition to the International Criminal Court’s attempts to exercise its jurisdiction over Israeli personnel.”
Prosecutor Bensouda, who will be replaced by British prosecutor Karim Khan on 16 June, said in December 2019 that war crimes had been, or were being, committed in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
She named both the Israeli army and armed Palestinian groups such as Hamas as possible perpetrators.