A Palestinian newspaper has reported that the Palestinian Authority (PA) decided on Monday to take the Israeli occupation to the International Criminal Court (ICC) for crimes against Palestinians in general, and against deceased Palestinian prisoner, Arafat Jaradat, in particular.
"The Palestinian leadership has definitely decided to go to the ICC and other human rights organisations in order to hold the Israeli occupation accountable for its crimes against Palestinians, especially Palestinian prisoners," the Palestinian minister of prisoners' affairs in Ramallah, Issa Qaraqe, told the Gaza based Al-Resalah newspaper.
Qaraqe said that the time had not been specified as yet, but that the necessary arrangements were being put in place to start an international anti-occupation campaign. "The need for this was reiterated after Jaradat's death," he said. "Prisoners in Israeli jails live in a very bad situation which requires an international movement supported by the Arabs."
Abdul-Kareem Shobair, a Palestinian expert in international law from Gaza on Sunday called for Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to take such steps. He also called for him to sign the Rome Treaty in order to be able to sue the Israeli occupation over its crimes.
"If he does not go, one of the Arab states should adopt the prisoners' issue and sue the Israeli occupation instead," he said during a rally held on Sunday in Gaza protesting against Jaradat's murder.
While Israeli sources claimed that Jaradat died of a heart attack, Palestinian officials insist that he was tortured to death as no signs of cardiovascular problems and no blood clots were found in his heart.
Final findings of the PA autopsy concluded that Jaradat was pummelled repeatedly on his chest and body. He sustained a total of six broken bones – in his spine, arms and legs, his lips were lacerated and his face was badly bruised.