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From Diplomacy to Outrage: How ICC’s Recent Decisions Complicate U.S. Foreign Policy

Daniel Kim Views  

With Karim Khan, Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) simultaneously requesting arrest warrants for the top leadership of both Israel and the Palestinian armed faction, Hamas, on grounds of war crimes, U.S. President Joe Biden of the United States has personally stepped forward to strongly criticize this as an outrageous action.

On the 20th (local time), President Biden issued a statement saying, “The ICC prosecutor’s request for an arrest warrant against Israeli leaders is shocking,” adding, “Let me be clear, no matter what the ICC prosecutor implies, there is no equivalence between Israel and Hamas.” He emphasized, “We will always stand by Israel against security threats.”

Antony Blinken, the Secretary of State, also criticized the situation in a separate statement, saying, “We reject the ICC prosecutor’s view of Israel and Hamas as equals. It’s a disgrace.”

He continued, “Hamas is a terrorist organization that has carried out the worst Jewish massacre since the Holocaust and still holds dozens of hostages, including Americans. We fundamentally reject the ICC prosecutor’s announcement to request arrest warrants for Israeli senior officials alongside Hamas terrorists.” John Kirby, the National Security Communications Advisor at the White House, also emphasized, “This is an infuriating situation. Israel and Hamas are not equivalent.”

Earlier, ICC Chief Prosecutor Karim Khan announced his request for arrest warrants for Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, Yahya Sinwar, Mohammed Deif, and Ismail Haniyeh.

Chief Prosecutor Khan pointed out that the Hamas leadership is accused of a surprise attack on October 7 of last year, which led to the deaths of hundreds of Israeli civilians and took at least 245 hostages.

He also pointed out that in retaliation, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and Defense Minister Gallant violated several provisions of the Rome Statute, the ICC treaty, including intentional war crime murder, directing intentional attacks against civilians, and using famine as a means of war.

Chief Prosecutor Khan argued, “There are reasonable grounds to believe that Prime Minister Netanyahu and Defense Minister Gallant of Israel are responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in Palestinian territories from October 8, 2023, based on the evidence collected and investigated by the investigation team.”

The ICC, established based on the Rome Statute signed by 124 countries in 2002, is an international organization with the authority to prosecute individuals who commit crimes against humanity, genocide, and war crimes. If an arrest warrant is issued, the party receiving the ICC’s request for arrest and extradition is obliged to execute it according to the ICC regulations and domestic law. Axios, a U.S. news website, reported, “The decision of ICC Chief Prosecutor Karim Khan is highly likely to complicate the White House’s efforts to seek a diplomatic solution to end the war.”

Daniel Kim
content@viewusglobal.com

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