Amal Clooney, along with other legal experts, suggests war crimes charges in Israel-Hamas conflict

Amal Clooney, a renowned legal expert, was among those who advised the chief prosecutor of the world’s leading war crimes court to pursue arrest warrants for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the leaders of the militant Hamas group.

Amal Clooney, the renowned human rights lawyer and wife of actor George Clooney, shared her involvement in a letter published on Monday on the website of the couple’s Clooney Foundation for Justice. In the letter, she highlighted that she and other experts in international law were in complete agreement to propose that International Criminal Court chief prosecutor Karim Khan pursue the issuance of warrants.

On Monday, Khan declared his intention to do so, stating that the actions carried out by both Israeli leaders and Hamas during the seven-month war in Gaza can be classified as war crimes.

“I joined this Panel because I strongly believe in upholding the rule of law and safeguarding the lives of civilians,” expressed Clooney. “The laws that protect civilians during times of war were established over a century ago and are applicable in every nation, irrespective of the circumstances surrounding a conflict.”

According to Clooney, the panel consisted of experts in international humanitarian law and international criminal law, with two of them being former judges at criminal tribunals in The Hague, where the ICC is located. She further emphasized that their decision was unanimous. Additionally, the panel shared their recommendation through an op-ed published in the Financial Times on Monday.

A panel of three judges at the ICC will deliberate and determine whether to issue the arrest warrants and proceed with a case. It usually takes the judges approximately two months to reach a decision on such matters.

Khan made an announcement on Monday, accusing Netanyahu, Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, and three Hamas leaders (Yehia Sinwar, Mohammed Deif, and Ismail Haniyeh) of committing war crimes and crimes against humanity in both the Gaza Strip and Israel.

Netanyahu and other Israeli leaders expressed their strong disapproval of the action, labeling it as disgraceful and antisemitic. U.S. President Joe Biden, echoing their sentiments, criticized the prosecutor and stood behind Israel’s right to protect itself from Hamas.

Israel’s non-membership in the court means that Netanyahu and Gallant are not immediately at risk of prosecution even if arrest warrants are issued. However, the potential for arrest could complicate their ability to travel abroad. It is worth noting that Hamas is already recognized as an international terrorist group by the Western world.

The most recent conflict between Israel and Hamas started on October 7th when militants from Gaza entered Israel, resulting in the deaths of approximately 1,200 individuals, predominantly civilians. Additionally, they took 250 people hostage.

Israel has been engaged in a relentless effort to dismantle Hamas in Gaza, resulting in a harsh and brutal campaign. The fighting has led to a significant loss of life, with over 35,000 Palestinians killed, including a large number of women and children. Gaza health officials’ estimates indicate that at least half of the casualties are non-combatants, as they do not differentiate between civilians and Hamas militants.

According to U.N. officials, the war in Gaza has resulted in a humanitarian crisis, with approximately 80% of the population being displaced and hundreds of thousands of people facing the imminent threat of starvation.

Reference Article

Avatar photo
MBS Staff
Articles: 7042

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *