NYTimes: Israeli officials believe ICC charges related to war in Gaza are coming

NYTimes: Israeli officials believe ICC charges related to war in Gaza are coming
Photo: International Criminal Court Headquarters in the Hague, Netherlands / Source: Creative Commons/Hypergio

Israeli officials cited in the New York Times believe the International Criminal Court (ICC) is preparing arrest warrants for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his aides along with leaders from Hamas for actions related to the war in Gaza. 

The anonymous sources said Israel could be accused of withholding humanitarian aid destined for Gaza and for engaging in an excessively harsh response to Hamas’ October 7 attack on Israel.

The court’s chief prosecutor has already confirmed it is investigating actions in Gaza but declined to comment on speculation that arrest warrants are imminent. 

Israel is reportedly using diplomatic channels in an effort to stop the warrants from being issued at a time when Israeli forces are facing worldwide condemnation for their conduct in Gaza.  

Headquartered in The Hague, the ICC is the world's sole international tribunal with the authority to charge individuals with war crimes, genocide, and crimes against humanity. It doesn’t have its own police force but rather depends on its 124-member states – that do not include the United States or Israel - to apprehend individuals indicted in warrants. 

The court lacks the jurisdiction to conduct trials in absentia but warrants issued by the ICC can impede travel for officials named in them and they are deeply stigmatizing.   

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