ICSPR: The statements of the Chief of Staff of the Israeli Occupation Army are a flagrant challenge to international criminal justice
The International Commission to Support Palestinians’ Rights (ICSPR) followed with cautious Aviv Kochavi’s press statement released today evening ” 21 March 2021″.
In his statement addressed to the soldiers and officers of the Israeli occupation army, Aviv Kochavi “the Chief of Staff of the Israeli Occupation Army” assured them that he covers and supports their war activities and campaigns, and that he is the one who personally ratified these activities. Moreover, he demanded the international community and the International Criminal Court to change their laws and way of thinking to suit what he calls “the fight against terrorism”.
His statement was not the first of its kind, where on Wednesday, 3 March 2020, he sent an urgent message to his soldiers after the International Criminal Court’s decision to open an investigation into potential war crimes in the Palestinian territories. That message states that:’’ The official investigation is fundamentally invalid and was subjectively taken, without jurisdiction’’, and added:” We will not allow any foreign institution without jurisdiction to interfere in our activities to defend Israel, and certainly not to expose those serving in the Israeli army to legal danger, and demanded his soldiers to continue performing their military duties.
ICSPR believes that such statements send a dangerous Israeli message regarding its endeavor to prioritize politics over the rule of international law, and these statements indicate recognition of responsibility for taking combat decisions, in addition, refer to an attempt to immunize Israeli officers and soldiers in the face of international justice.
IVSPR confirms that the preliminary investigations conducted by the Office of the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court clearly indicate that the Israeli occupation forces committed war crimes and crimes against humanity. Therefore:
ICSPR believes that the statements of the Israeli army chief of staff constitute a flagrant challenge to the principles of international criminal justice.
ICSPR urges the Public Prosecution Office of ICC to give priority to the Palestinian cause through initiating the preliminary investigation into the crimes of the Israeli occupation, and to refuse to submit to any considerations or political pressure.