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ICC arrest warrant for Netanyahu sparks wide reactions

Immigration News

Fidel Rahmati
Fidel Rahmatihttps://www.khaama.com
Fidai Rahmati is the editor and content writer for Khaama Press. You may follow him at Twitter @FidelRahmati

The Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) on Monday, May 20, accused senior Israeli officials and Hamas leaders of “crimes against humanity” and requested an arrest warrant for Benjamin Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of Israel, and Yahya Sinwar, the leader of Hamas, which has sparked widespread reactions from countries.

In his initial response, Benjamin Netanyahu termed the request for an arrest warrant as a “historic disgrace” and added that “Israel does not fall under the jurisdiction of this court in the judicial realm.”

Karim Khan, the Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), on Monday, demanded the issuance of an arrest warrant for Benjamin Netanyahu, the Prime Minister of Israel, and Yahya Sinwar, the leader of Hamas, on charges of war crimes and explained in this request, “There is acceptable evidence to accept that both parties [Israeli and Hamas leaders] are responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity” in Israel and Gaza.

This request includes five individuals: Benjamin Netanyahu and Yoav Gallant, Israel’s Defense Minister; Ismail Haniyeh, Hamas’s political leader; Mohammed Deif, a Hamas military commander; and Yahya Sinwar.

US President Joe Biden, a key ally of Israel, rejected this request and dismissed the accusation of “genocide in Gaza” with the justification that Israel has the right to defend itself.

He reiterated support for Israel’s destruction of Hamas and Britain also said in a milder response that issuing arrest warrants for Israeli officials does not help the current situation.

International media have reported that Mr Netanyahu and Mr Gallant are not facing imminent arrest, but the request from the Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) was a symbolic blow that deepened Israel’s isolation regarding the Gaza war.

It is worth mentioning that Israel is not a member of the International Court, so even if an arrest warrant is issued, Mr. Netanyahu and Mr. Gallant are not immediately at risk of legal prosecution. However, the threat of arrest could make international travel difficult for Israeli leaders.

The Prime Minister of Israel, in his initial response, called it a “historic disgrace” and added, “You must hear it to believe it. The International Criminal Court in The Hague is considering issuing arrest warrants for senior government and military officials of Israel as war criminals.”

According to him, “This is the first time a democratic country fighting for its survival under the laws of war is accused of war crimes.”

Hamas also reacted to this request from the International Court, and Sami Abu Zuhri, a senior Hamas official, said that “considering the oppressor equal to the victim” encourages Israel to continue the war in Gaza.

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