Lawyers, representing 448 named victims mostly of Israel’s war against the Gaza Strip back in the summer of 2014, along with over 50 Palestinian trade unions and groups submitted a large dossier to the International Criminal Court (ICC) prosecutor’s office on Wednesday, showing “clearly that crimes within the jurisdiction of the court have been committed.”
The 50-day Israeli war against Gaza killed nearly 2,200 Palestinians, including 577 children. Over 11,100 others — including 3,374 children, 2,088 women and 410 elderly people — were also wounded in the war.
Almost no progress has been made in the process of examining the documents submitted in June 2015 and evidence by the ICC, which initially said it had launched a preliminary examination of the dossiers.
#Gaza war victims demand justice at ICC… https://t.co/NedU6bZIGZ
— Media Review Network (@MRN1SA) July 12, 2017
“For two years, Palestine is under preliminary examination,” said lawyer Gilles Devers in a press conference on Wednesday. “In Gaza, we think two years is too long.” He added that the Israeli military operations in the 2014 Gaza war constituted war crimes and the “ICC was competent” to handle the case.
Devers said the ICC’s Chief Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda had “an obligation” to turn the preliminary examination into a full probe.
Palestinian activists also told journalists that the long-awaited probe had stalled, calling on both the ICC and the PA to speed up the examining process.
Gaza civilians demand action from the ICC https://t.co/jklrJIqkKa
— Catherine B Haessig (@catherinebh) July 20, 2017
It was the first time that Palestinian civil groups, including physicians, farmers, fishermen, and educators, were appealing directly to the international tribunal.
Gaza, with a population of more than 1.8 million, has been under Israeli siege since June 2007. The blockade has caused a decline in the standards of living as well as unprecedented levels of unemployment and unrelenting poverty.
(Press TV, PC, Social Media)