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Dutch Court: Immunity for Israeli War Crimes

by Oui Fri Aug 25th, 2023 at 02:31:34 PM EST

Head prosecutor Khan (ICC) is quite busy right now on a project funded by non-member the United States of America

Dutch supreme court: Israeli military immune from prosecution in Netherlands | JPost |

In the suit, Ziada sought unspecified damages against Gantz under Dutch universal jurisdiction rules, which allows countries to prosecute serious offenses committed elsewhere.

The Dutch supreme court ruled on Friday that two Israeli former military commanders, including ex-defense minister Benny Gantz, are immune from civil prosecution in the Netherlands in a case brought over the deaths of six Palestinians in an Israeli air strike.

The ruling upheld a December 2021 Dutch appeals court finding that Benny Gantz - a career soldier turned politician - and ex-air force commander Amir Eshel, as then-high-ranking Israeli officials carrying out government policy, could not be held liable in a Dutch civil case, "irrespective of the nature and seriousness of the conduct alleged against them."

The Ismail Ziada Case | The Nuhanovic Foundation for War Reparations |

Lieutenant General Benjamin Gantz, was the Chief of General Staff of the Israeli army from February 2011 to February 2015 and Major General Amir Eshel, was Air Force Chief of the Israeli army from 2012 to August 2017. As the bombing was carried out under their responsibility, Ziada argued that they were liable for his current and future material and immaterial damages. It is the first ever civil claim against Israeli army officials for the killing of civilians during the attacks on Gaza in 2014.

Israel Crosses 'Red-Line' with Criticism of Obama and Kerry | by Oui @BooMan - July 28, 2014 |

Dutch court won't hold Israeli military brass liable for Gaza War deaths | Court House News - Dec. 7, 2021 |

The decision affirms immunity for officials in connection to an airstrike that killed six members of one family during the 2014 Gaza War. 

Rejecting the appeal, the three-judge panel said national courts must remain neutral when the national interest of other countries is in question. In this way, national courts are unlike the International Criminal Court, for example, which is also based at The Hague.

"Although the state of Israel is not a party to these proceedings, its interests are indirectly indeed at stake," the judges wrote. 

It is unclear if Ziada plans to appeal.

"The judgment is conservative to the extreme, halting justice for human beings and supporting diplomatic relations between states. The Dutch supreme court will without any doubt confirm the ruling, but the most important question is whether Ismail Ziada will hold his ground and continue claiming rights that should not be denied in a court of law," his lawyer, Liesbeth Zegveld, said in an email to Courthouse News. 

One of the best ….

Liesbeth Zegveld specializes in liability for human rights violations. In particular she's committed to victims of war.  As head of the international law & human rights department, she has worked on numerous high-profile cases, focussing on war victims.  She set up the Nuhanovic Foundation, aimed at facilitating access to justice for war victims.

From my earlier diary ...

Israel's IDF Gaza Bombing in Dutch Court | Dec. 8, 2021 |

A pivotal year 2014 where the Dutch can hold up human rights, a nation where the Carnegie Peace Institute, International Court of Justice, and the International Criminal Court (ICC) is hosted. Upholding Universal Human Rights ... 😡

The Ten Obstacles the ICC Prosecutor Faces In Investigating Palestine

Some of those who support Israel see the International Criminal Court (ICC) as an existential threat. Here is a first set of ten obstacles that the Hague Court, which has taken a fight with a muscular opponent in the most heated region in the world, will have to face.

On March 3, Fatou Bensouda the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC) opened an investigation into the situation in Palestine, covering crimes which may have been committed since 13 June 2014 - the date that the Palestinian authorities gave to the ICC when they asked the court to step in.

These alleged crimes include acts committed by both the Israeli defence forces and by Hamas and Palestinian armed groups during 2014 and by Israeli authorities since 2014 in theoccupation of the West Bank and East Jerusalem. Bensouda has effectively presented a challenge for her successor, Karim Khan, who will take the reins in June this year for a 9-year term.

Here we list the top ten obstacles that will make this investigation the most difficult the court has ever attempted.

US and UK: Accessories to Genocide | Tikun Olam |

They block Security Council resolution condemning Israel's attack on Gaza

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 26th, 2023 at 10:20:25 AM EST
Under fire, ICC prosecutor says to uphold fight against atrocities | Reuters - Nov. 23, 2016 |

The International Criminal Court's prosecutor said her investigations into alleged war crimes would not be impacted by the plans of three African countries to withdraw from the court and she would keep going after the perpetrators of atrocities.

Gambia, South Africa and Burundi notified the United Nations in October and November of their plans to withdraw from the ICC. The withdrawals become effective one year after the notification is filed.

To date, all but one of the court's 10 investigations have been in Africa and its five convicted suspects are from Democratic Republic of Congo, Central African Republic and Mali.

The ICC rejects allegations of bias against African nations, arguing many of the cases were brought by African governments themselves and that it has 10 preliminary inquiries or investigations into alleged atrocities in Afghanistan, Colombia, Georgia, Iraq, the Palestinian Territories and Ukraine.

The ICC is a court of last resort, only intervening in member countries when national jurisdictions are unable or unwilling to prosecute mass atrocities.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 26th, 2023 at 10:22:20 AM EST
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Former Liberian Leader Boycotts War Crimes Trial | PBS - June 2007 |

Taylor's assigned lawyer Karim Khan also left the courtroom, saying the former leader had withdrawn permission to have Khan represent him and was instead applying to serve as his own defense attorney.

The judge then ordered the trial to continue, and Chief Prosecutor Stephen Rapp began his opening statement.

Rapp countered Taylor's claims, saying that the former leader had been assigned a lawyer, assistant attorneys, a special investigator and court funds. "Everything that can be done is being done," Rapp said, according to the Associated Press.

Presiding Judge Julia Sebutinde of Uganda repeatedly cut short Khan's address and Taylor's letter, demanding an explanation of Taylor's absence.

Sebutinde ordered Khan to stay and represent Taylor through the first day of the trial, but he said he no longer had Taylor's authority and left.

Taylor, 59, has pleaded not guilty to 11 counts of war crimes and crimes against humanity at the Special Court for Sierra Leone. Approximately 50,000 people died in the West African nation's civil war from 1991 to 2002.

"Even a 'Big Man' Must Face Justice" -- Lessons from the Trial of Charles Taylor | July 25, 2012 |

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 26th, 2023 at 10:23:36 AM EST
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The boycott of Israel

Publication: Aspekt/CIDI October 25, 2021

This poignant book describes the backgrounds, language, motivations and methods of the BDS movement, the international boycott of Israel. Various interviews show how the boycott of a small country in the Middle East has had serious consequences for the lives of people in the Netherlands.

The author studied cultural anthropology at VU University Amsterdam and has been studying the pro-Palestinian movement in the Netherlands for ten years. He goes to demonstrations and meetings to find out what moves the activists through participant observation.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 26th, 2023 at 02:12:07 PM EST
Stupid guy, publishing personal information of Rights Forum leadership. Attracting rightwing terror ...

Beyond being a lobbyist ... dirty work for an occupier leaning towards fascism ... democracy my a$$. Confuses victimhood and being the perpetrator of war crimes and abuse of human rights on a daily basis. Free Palestine 🇵🇸🇵🇸🇵🇸

Writes a blog to disqualify a human rights group ... The Rights Forum

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 26th, 2023 at 02:13:21 PM EST
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Perhaps a bit of plagiarizing these Australian authors ... 😆

Book Review |Boycotting Israel is Wrong: The progressive path to peace between Palestinians and Israelis | July 2015 |

Boycotting Israel is Wrong is a timely short book on the BDS phenomenon by Australian academics Philip Mendes and Nick Dyrenfurth.

It combines the force of a rigorously argued polemic with the authority of a properly footnoted academic paper, and in just 205 pages manages to provide a historic overview of the changing relationship between Zionism, Israel and the Western left; useful case studies of Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) in Australia, the UK and the US; and a progressive dissection of the motives, ideology and methodology of the boycotters.

Mendes and Dyrenfurth pull no punches. They describe BDS as a `rather dubious moral successor' to the anti-apartheid movement, and `the worst of any of the conflict resolution solutions currently on offer.' They set out to prove that `at its core' it is `a thinly veiled campaign to resuscitate the so-called one state solution whereby the State of Israel would give way to an Arab-dominated Greater Palestine' and neatly do so by dissecting the superficially attractive three main aims of BDS - ending the occupation, full equality for Arab citizens, and securing the right of return - and how these are interpreted by the BDS movement in a way that is incompatible with Israel's continued existence. They conclude that the BDS movement has constructed a `fantasy world in which Israel is detached from its specifically Jewish roots, and then miraculously destroyed by the political equivalent of a remote control' thus overcoming the Left's 'historical opposition to racism' and the genocidal war that would be the only real way to destroy Israel.

Dutch Lobby Organisation CIDI Withdraws and Rectifies False Allegations Following Legal Action by Al-Haq

The extreme rightwing elements in Rutte IV cabinet already acted on DISINFORMATION and pulled funding of Palestinian human rights groups. Cowards.

🚨🚨 The Israeli Occupation Authorities just declared 6 leading Palestinian human rights organizations to be "terrorist organizations," including Defense for Children International, Al-Haq, Addameer for Prisoner Support, and the Union of Palestinian Women's Committees.
-- Mohammed El-Kurd (@m7mdkurd) October 22, 2021

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 26th, 2023 at 02:16:20 PM EST
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Israel/Palestine: UN experts call on governments to resume funding for six Palestinian CSOs designated by Israel as 'terrorist organisations' | OHCHR - April 25, 2022 |

In October 2021, the UN experts denounced Israel's designation of six Palestinian civil society organisations - Addameer Prisoner Support and Human Rights Association, Al-Haq, Bisan Center for Research and Development, Defense for Children International - Palestine, the Union of Agricultural Work Committees and the Union of Palestinian Women Committees - as terrorist organizations. Israel's designation enables it to close the organisations, seize their assets, end their work and charge their leadership and staff with terrorist offences.

"Israel has had six months to substantiate its accusations and it has failed to deliver," the experts said. "We call on the funding governments and international organisations to swiftly conclude that Israel has not established its allegations and to announce that they will continue to financially and politically support these organisations and the communities and groups they serve."

Although Israel has not substantiated its allegations publicly or to the funding governments and international organizations, several of the funders have delayed their contributions to the Palestinian organisations while they investigate these claims. The European Union has formally suspended its funding for two of these organisations. This has undermined the work of these Palestinian organisations and has had an incalculable impact on the communities they support. There has been a lack of clarity about the duration of these steps, the experts said.

"We are deeply disturbed by Israel's apparent misuse of anti-terrorism legislation to attack some of the leading civil society organisations in Palestine. Such misuse must be rejected and countered," the experts said.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 26th, 2023 at 02:20:38 PM EST
[ Parent ]
From my diary ...

Israel's Pegasus: The Secret Arm of Dutch Intelligence | June 2, 2022 |

Was not much of a secret to me looking at some remarkable achievements of both the "civil" AIVD and military MIVD ...

A single news item this evening grew into a diary ... talking human rights in the Western alliance.

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 26th, 2023 at 02:23:07 PM EST

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 26th, 2023 at 02:24:23 PM EST
[ Parent ]
My most recent, extended diary of Israel's continued ABUSE of Palestinian human rights ...

Settler Extremism Blessed by Jerusalem Leaders

Decades of ugly scenes of settler attacks on Palestinian homes, olive groves and just simply brutality because it can with impunity ... call it "price tag" and the settler terrorists will be protected.

Our report reveals the true extent of Israel's apartheid regime.
Whether they live in Gaza, East Jerusalem and the rest of the West Bank,
or Israel itself, Palestinians are treated as an inferior racial group and
systematically deprived of their rights. We found that Israel's cruel
policies of segregation, dispossession and exclusion across all
territories under its control clearly amount to apartheid.
The international community has an obligation to act

Agnès Callamard, Amnesty International's Secretary General

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 26th, 2023 at 02:28:03 PM EST
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'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 26th, 2023 at 02:29:04 PM EST
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Sep 2nd, 2023 at 10:37:25 PM EST
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Q&A: The International Criminal Court and the United States | HRW - Sept. 2020 |


8. What is the US position now on the ICC?  [link]

Under President Donald Trump's administration, the US government has said that it will not cooperate with the ICC and has threatened retaliatory steps against ICC staff and member countries should the court investigate US or allied country citizens. Then National Security Adviser John Bolton first announced this approach in September 2018. Two weeks later, President Trump addressed the UN General Assembly stating that the "United States will provide no support or recognition to the International Criminal Court. As far as America is concerned the ICC has no jurisdiction, no legitimacy, and no authority."

On March 15, 2019, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced that the US would impose visa bans on ICC officials involved in the court's potential investigation of US citizens for alleged crimes in Afghanistan. He indicated the same policy may be used to deter ICC efforts to investigate nationals of allied countries, including Israelis, and stated that the US would be prepared to take further actions, including economic sanctions, "if the ICC does not change its course." The Trump administration confirmed in early April 2019 that it had revoked ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda's visa.

Pompeo publicly threatened two staff members of the ICC on March 17, 2020, naming them and stating that he was "considering what the United States' next steps ought to be with respect to these individuals and all those who are putting Americans at risk." Pompeo said he wanted to identify people responsible for the investigation - and their family members - and implied he could seek actions against them.

On May 15, 2020, Pompeo vowed to "exact consequences" if the ICC "continues down its current course" - that is, if the court moves forward with a Palestine investigation.

Trump issued a sweeping executive order on June 11, 2020 authorizing asset freezes and family entry bans that could be imposed against certain ICC officials. The administration acted on September 2 to designate Fatou Bensouda, the ICC prosecutor, and Phakiso Mochochoko, the head of the Office of the Prosecutor's Jurisdiction, Complementarity, and Cooperation Division, for sanctions. The executive order also provides for the same sanctions with regard to those who assist certain court investigations, risking a broad chilling effect on cooperation with the ICC.

[All links were checked and updated  - Oui]

'Sapere aude'

by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 26th, 2023 at 06:14:01 PM EST
Russian war crimes investigation only exposes the cowardice of the ICC | The Guardian Letters |

The International Criminal Court's arrest warrants for Vladimir Putin and his commissioner for children's rights (ICC judges issue arrest warrant for Vladimir Putin over alleged war crimes, 17 March) represent an important milestone in demonstrating to the world how irrelevant, compromised and cowardly the ICC is.

Rather than being a beacon of international justice without favour or prejudice [Rome Statute], it seems that it prefers currying favour among its western sponsors and backers instead of casting the light of justice over the egregious war crimes and crimes against humanity that the US-led west has committed over the years.

The destruction of Yugoslavia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and Syria come to mind, coupled with the illegal and criminal economic war of sanctions against Venezuela, Cuba, Nicaragua, Iran, Afghanistan etc, where the aim is to try to destroy these countries' economies and starve the people into bringing about a change of regime.

A more fitting description to go with its acronym is international court of cowardice.

Russell Caplan
Wood Green, London

'Sapere aude'
by Oui (Oui) on Sat Aug 26th, 2023 at 06:15:11 PM EST
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