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US administration silent about Palestine's effective membership at the ICC

April 2, 2015 at 11:51 am

The White House remained silent on Palestine ICC membership that went into effect on 1 April 2015; a move that angered its ally Israel, the Anadolu agency reported.

Not only the White House’s daily briefing did not include any statement on the Palestinian progression, the US State Department whose staff is busy following up with nuclear talks over Iran’s nuclear program currently taking place, that they did not hold a press briefing for two consecutive days.

The US Administration tried and by all means to block Palestine’s accession to the international body claiming that “Palestine is not a state”, and therefore ineligible to join the International Criminal Court.

Moreover, the US media did not address the issue with the exception of two brief reports by the CNN network and the New York Times newspaper report while the Huffington Post included an opinion article by human rights lawyer, Catherine Gallagher.

The US State Department announced in January that it ‘will continue its opposition to any move against Israel in the International Criminal Court being incompatible with peace efforts’. ‘We do not recognize Palestine as a state, so we do not believe they are eligible to join the International Criminal Court’ it said.

Washington vetoed on December, 31 an Arab draft resolution to end the Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories by 2017 submitted to the UN Security Council.

Less than three days following its failure to pass the resolution, Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas signed 18 international treaties including the Rome Statute angering both the United States and Israel.

ICC announced Wednesday that Palestine has become the 132 member of the international tribunal.

‘As of today, Palestine has become a full member of the International Criminal Court’, a spokesman for ICC, Fadi Abdullah told Anadolu news agency.

‘With its effective membership, the Palestinian Authority has the right to prosecute Israeli leaders for war crimes in the Palestinian territories’, Abdullah said.

The Israeli Foreign Ministry slammed the announcement and described it as ‘a flagrant violation of fundamental principles to resolve the dispute’, according to Israeli public radio.