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US, Israel working to prevent ICC Netanyahu arrest warrant

Israel and US working to prevent ICC arrest warrant against Netanyahu
2 min read
29 April, 2024
The International Criminal Court may issue arrest warrants against Netanyahu and other senior Israeli officials this week
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has asked the US administration to try and prevent an arrest warrant against him [Getty]

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has been working to prevent the International Criminal Court (ICC) from issuing an arrest warrant against him, according to Israeli media reports.

Netanyahu is leading a "nonstop push over the telephone" to prevent an arrest warrant from being issued with Israeli news site Walla saying the PM is "under unusual stress" over the issue.

There have been reports that the ICC may issue the arrest warrants this week.

The US is also working to prevent the global court from issuing warrants against Netanyahu and other senior Israeli officials such as Defence Minister Yoav Gallant and army chief Herzi Halevi over their role in the war in Gaza.

Concerned Israeli officials are trying to garner the support of other Western allies over the issue.

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The ICC is not only probing Israeli forces' actions in the current war on Gaza but also previous attacks on the devastated territory and the occupied West Bank dating back to 2014. 

If arrest warrants are issued, all 123 ICC countries will be obliged to detain and hand over the Israeli officials to the court, which has its headquarters in the Hague.

Netanyahu insists the ICC ruling would not impact Israel’s war on Gaza, which has killed over 34,000 Palestinians so far.

"Under my leadership, Israel will never accept any attempt by the International Criminal Court in the Hague to undermine its basic right to defend itself," Netanyahu said in a statement on Telegram.

"While decisions made by the court in the Hague will not affect Israel's actions, they will set a dangerous precedent that threatens soldiers and public figures," he added.

Israel has faced repeated accusations from international bodies and human rights experts that its war in Gaza is breaching international law.

Israel has bombed schools, hospitals, residential areas, and civilian concentrations while imposing a complete siege on Gaza, where the 2.3 million population is facing widespread hunger, disease, and displacement.

The case at the ICC is separate from the genocide case brought by South Africa to the International Court of Justice at the end of 2023. The ICJ is also based in The Hauge.