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International Criminal Court

'The Day Has Come': The International Criminal Court Seeks Arrests of Netanyahu, Gallant, and Hamas Chiefs

The International Criminal Court (ICC) wants to issue arrest warrants for top Hamas leaders – as well as for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant – on charges of crimes against humanity in the Gaza war, its Chief Prosecutor Karim Khan announced on Monday, May 20, the 227th day of the Gaza war.

“My office seeks to charge two of those most responsible, Netanyahu and Gallant, both as co-perpetrators and as superiors,” Khan stated. Warrants would also be sought for Hamas leaders Yahya Sinwar, Ismail Haniyeh, and Mohammed Deif, Khan said as he demanded the release of the remaining 128 hostages in Gaza.

Khan first spoke of asking the pre-trial chamber to approve the issuance of arrest warrants in an interview with American media. He then published a video and text statement from his office.

Netanyahu is the first Israeli leader and the only head of a democratic country ever to face the threat of ICC arrest. He is now likely to join the small ranks of world leaders the ICC has marked as international pariahs such as Russian President Vladimir Putin, former Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir, and former Libyan president Muammar Gaddafi. Israel is not a party to the Rome Statute, which governs the ICC.

Should the pre-trial chamber agree to issue the warrants, the legal process could take years. The announcement, however, adds strength to the growing call for Israel to stop its military campaign in Gaza to destroy Hamas.

Israel was outraged that Khan had drawn a moral equivalence between its democratic country and a terror group, particularly given that the state’s legal system is globally respected while Hamas is a non-state actor without an independent judiciary. (JPost / VFI News)

“In this meaningless life of mine I have seen both of these: the righteous perishing in their righteousness, and the wicked living long in their wickedness.” - Ecclesiastes 7:15

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