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President of Palestine Mahmoud Abbas visits the ICC Prosecutor

BEIRUT |, with agencies - October 31, 2015, 13h34
Photo by ICC

Friday 30 October 2015, the Prosecutor of the International Criminal ("ICC" or the "Court"), Fatou Bensouda and representatives of her Office received Mahmoud Abbas, the President of Palestine and his delegation at the Seat of the Court in The Hague, Netherlands. 

The meeting was held in the margins of President Abbas' official visit to the Kingdom of The Netherlands.

The top Palestinian officials urged the court to speed up a probe into allegations of Israeli abuses amid an upsurge of fresh violence between the two sides.

He was referring to the preliminary examination of the situation in Palestine which was opened by the Prosecutor in January 2015, regarding the war between Israel and Hamas in Gaza in summer 2014. In this context, the Prosecutor stated that her Office will also examine whether any of the newly reported incidents of violence constitute crimes falling within the jurisdiction of the ICC, and for the same purpose, will continue to record any new instances of violence or incitement to violence that may occur in the future. She warned that anyone – on either side – who commits, orders, incites, encourages or contributes in any other way to the commission of crimes falling within the jurisdiction of the ICC is liable to prosecution either at the national level or at the Court.

During his Friday's visit, Palestinian foreign minister Riad al-Malki handed over a new dossier to Bensouda, "making reference to the extra-judicial killings, home demolition and collective punishments." He said : "It is extremely important to expedite the process... because if Israel feels impunity, what will deter Israel from multiplying the victims?"

It also cited examples "in the last 40 days of Israeli aggression."

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas met Bensouda on Friday for the first time since the Palestinian Authority sparked controversy by joining the tribunal in January.

Referring to the recent escalation of tensions in Israel and Palestine, the Prosecutor stressed the need for calm and restraint from all sides, and an end to the violence. She underscored that innocent people have been injured and killed on both sides, and cautioned that the situation may further degenerate into a large-scale commission of crimes that may fall within the jurisdiction of the ICC. 

#ICC, #ICC_Palestine, #Palestine
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