ICC Receives Referrals for Investigation of Israeli Attacks on Gaza
The International Criminal Court (ICC) has received referrals from five states to investigate Israel’s attacks on Gaza.
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The International Criminal Court (ICC) announced on Friday that it has received referrals from five states for an investigation into Israel’s attacks on Gaza. The referrals were made by South Africa, Bangladesh, Bolivia, and the East African nations of Comoros and Djibouti, according to a statement by ICC Prosecutor Karim Khan.
Under the Rome Statute, the court’s governing treaty, a state party can report a situation to the prosecutor where one or more crimes within the court’s jurisdiction appear to have been committed. The state can request the prosecutor to investigate the situation to determine whether specific individuals should be indicted for those crimes, Khan explained.
Khan confirmed that his office is already investigating the situation in Palestine, an investigation that began in March 2021. The investigation includes examining actions that could be considered violations of the Rome Statute since June 13, 2014, in Gaza, the West Bank, and East Jerusalem.
“The investigation is ongoing and covers the increase in hostilities and violence since the attacks on October 7, 2023. In accordance with the Rome Statute, our office can investigate crimes committed within a State Party’s territory and against its nationals,” he said.
Upon starting his term in June 2021, Khan established a specialized team to progress the investigation of the situation in Palestine. “As I stated in my recent visit to Rafah Crossing, pursuant to its mandate, this Unified Team is moving with focus in collecting, preserving and analyzing information and communications from key stakeholders in relation to relevant incidents,” he said.
The office has gathered “a significant volume of information and evidence,” he said, and added: “I continue to encourage all those with relevant information to contact my Office.”
Since Israel started bombing Gaza on Oct. 7, at least 11,500 Palestinians have been killed, including over 7,800 women and children, and more than 29,200 others have been injured, according to the latest figures.
Thousands of buildings, including hospitals, mosques, and churches, have also been damaged or destroyed in Israel’s relentless air and ground attacks on the besieged enclave.
An Israeli blockade also cut Gaza off from fuel, electricity and water supplies, and reduced aid deliveries to a small trickle.
The Israeli death toll, meanwhile, is around 1,200, according to official figures.
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