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Dhaka Tribune

Bangladesh, 4 other nations charge Israel of committing war crimes in Palestine

  • The ICC already has an ongoing investigation for alleged war crimes in 2014
  • Israel is not a member of the court
Update : 18 Nov 2023, 08:07 PM

Bangladesh, Bolivia, South Africa, Comoros and Djibouti have jointly requested the International Criminal Court to investigate the situation in the Palestinian territories.

The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court on Friday said he had received a joint request from the five countries to investigate the situation in the Palestinian territories.

Prosecutor Karim Kahn said the referral had come from South Africa, Bangladesh, Bolivia, Comoros and Djibouti. South Africa said the request was made "to ensure that the ICC pays urgent attention to the grave situation in Palestine."

The ICC already has an ongoing investigation into "the situation in the State of Palestine" for alleged war crimes committed since 13 June 2014.

Last month, Kahn said that his office had jurisdiction both over Hamas' attack on Israel on October 7 and any crimes committed as part of Israel's response, including bombings in the Gaza Strip.

Because an investigation was already underway, Friday's request will have limited practical impact.

In a statement, the prosecutor's office said it had so far "collected a significant volume of information and evidence" on crimes in the Palestinian territories and also committed by Palestinians.

Israel is not a member of the court and does not recognize its jurisdiction.

The ICC can investigate nationals of non-member states in certain circumstances, including when crimes are alleged to have been committed in the territories of member states. The Palestinian territories have been listed among the ICC's members since 2015.

A court of last resort, the ICC prosecutes individuals for alleged criminal conduct when its 124 member states are unwilling or unable to prosecute themselves.

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