Hundreds of Israelis could find themselves at risk by court decision; Israel bracing for protracted legal battle.
International Criminal Court Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda announced on Wednesday that she is opening a full war crimes probe against Israel and the Hamas terrorist group in the Gaza Strip.
“The decision to open an investigation followed a painstaking preliminary examination undertaken by my office that lasted close to five years,” Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda said in a statement.
“In the end, our central concern must be for the victims of crimes, both Palestinian and Israeli, arising from the long cycle of violence and insecurity that has caused deep suffering and despair on all sides,” she added. “My office will take the same principled, non-partisan, approach that it has adopted in all situations over which its jurisdiction is seized.”
Netanyahu called the decision to investigate Israel “undiluted antisemitism and the height of hypocrisy.”
“Without any jurisdiction,” Netanyahu lamented, “it decided that our brave soldiers, who take every precaution to avoid civilian casualties against the worst terrorists in the world who deliberately target civilians, it’s our soldiers who are war criminals. They said that when we build a house in our eternal capital of Jerusalem, it’s been our capital for 3,000 years, that too is a war crime.”
Netanyahu pointed out that the ICC was established to prevent atrocities like the Holocaust from happening again, and is now coming after the Jewish state.
“Of course, it turns a blind eye to Iran, Syria and the other dictatorships that are committing real war crimes left and right,” he stated.