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September 30, 2018 1:08 pm

Palestinian Authority Tries to Put US in the Dock at International Court of Justice for Embassy Move

avatar by Benjamin Kerstein

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The UN’s International Court of Justice (ICJ). Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

The Palestinian Authority has registered a complaint with the International Court of Justice in the Hague that charges the US with violating international agreements by moving its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

According to Yediot Ahronot, the PA charges that the embassy move violates the 1961 Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations, which regulates diplomatic relations between states, the status of diplomats and diplomatic missions, and the responsibilities of states in which they are located, such as the requirement of diplomatic immunity.

The Palestinians are concentrating on the requirement that embassies can only be located on the sovereign territory of the host nation. Israel, says the PA, is the military occupier of Jerusalem and not the sovereign power. Israel annexed Jerusalem after the 1967 Six Day War and considers itself the sole sovereign power over the city.

In the complaint, the Palestinians called on the court to force the United States to immediately remove its embassy from Jerusalem. In his speech to the UN on Wednesday, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas accused the US of carrying out “an assault on international law” and called on President Donald Trump to “rescind his decisions and decrees on Jerusalem, refugees, and settlements, which contradict international resolutions and the understandings we have reached.”

“They are much too biased toward Israel,” he said of the American administration.

This is the third time in six months that the Palestinians have complained to international courts. In one case, the PA accused Israel of war crimes due to the demolition of a Bedouin village in the West Bank. In another, the Palestinians called on the court to investigate Israeli settlement activity.

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