Palestinian Authority Presents Claims Against Israel to International Criminal Court

Settlement enterprise, expropriation of land and settler aggression are being discussed in Amman meetings, Palestinian official says.

Jack Khoury
Jack Khoury
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Kedumim, one of dozens of West Bank settlements that had a large part of its debts erased.
Kedumim, one of dozens of West Bank settlements that had a large part of its debts erased. Credit: Tali Mayer
Jack Khoury
Jack Khoury

Senior officials from the Palestinian Authority met with representatives of the International Criminal Court in Amman on Saturday, and presented them with Palestinian claims against Israel concerning cases they have already filed with the court.

The Palestinian delegation consists of lawyers and activists from the committee responsible for the ICC cases on behalf of the PLO and human rights organizations within the PA.

ICC representatives received a general briefing on the settlements enterprise, including figures and aerial photographs, and the effect of the settlements on Palestinian lives, the Jordanian newspaper Al-Ghad reported on Sunday morning, quoting a senior Palestinian delegation member.

The meetings will continue through Monday. The Palestinians will present four cases, all linked to the settlements and Israel’s actions in Hebron and East Jerusalem, alongside allegations of environmental damage, appropriation of water resources, expropriation of land and aggression from settlers, added the official. The official said the Palestinians will raise the case of the arson against the Dawabshe family home and the murder of Mohammed Abu Khdeir.

PA officials expect ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda to adopt the Palestinian position and determine the evidence is sufficient to open an investigation, especially because this is one of the main cases submitted by the Palestinians to the court.

Palestinian sources said they are countering the international pressure the United States, in conjunction with Israel, has spearheaded to halt the cases. This is why it was so important to present all the data, including a historical overview of the settlement policy and its impact on Palestinians, said Palestinian officials, because ICC agreement to open an investigation would likely lead to the investigation of senior Israeli officials, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.

A Palestinian official also told Haaretz that the agenda for Sunday includes the question of Palestinian prisoners held in Israel, the wars in Gaza and the blockade on the Gaza Strip as well as their effect on the Palestinians.

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