ICC Gives Israel, Palestinians One Month to Apply for Probe Deferral: Reports
i24 News – The International Criminal Court (ICC) announced on Thursday that it had formally notified Israel and the Palestinian Authority of its upcoming probe into alleged war crimes on the Palestinian territories.
The act gives the two parties a one-month period to apply for deferring the case, the ICC said; to do so, a party must prove that it is capable of investigating the matter on their own.
According to the Associated Press, the notifications were sent to all signatories of the Rome Statute, the court’s founding charter, as well as Israel and Palestinians, on March 9, with Israel’s Channel 13 confirming that Jerusalem received it and is yet to respond.
Under Article 16 of the Statute, an ICC investigation or prosecution can be deferred for up to a year on a request from the UN Security Council, which must first approve the appropriate resolution.
According to the AP report, Israel could submit an overview of its own actions taken to probe the possible violations during Operation Protective Edge in 2014 in Gaza, which followed the murder of three Israeli teenagers by the Palestinians.
The murder itself does not fall under the ICC jurisdiction due to the timing of the Palestinians joining it.
Should the court accept the outline, Israel could potentially conduct the investigation on its own, with occasional supervision by the ICC.
The report comes as Israel’s President Reuven Rivlin and IDF Chief of Staff Lt. Gen Aviv Kochavi are touring Europe, seeking to drum up support for Israel and its rejection of the ICC probe.