Palestine condemns German president’s claim regarding jurisdiction of the ICC

Occupied Palestine (QNN)- The Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Thursday slammed German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier’s remarks that the International Criminal Court (ICC) has no jurisdiction to investigate Israeli war crimes in occupied Palestinian territories.

The ministry described the German president’s remarks as a “departure from the rules of international law” and an “interference with the ICC’s work and decisions”.

“The German government’s position is that the International Criminal Court has no jurisdiction in this matter due to the absence of Palestinian statehood,” Steinmeier told Israeli Haaretz newspaper on the eve of his visit to the occupation state on Wednesday evening.

“Germany nevertheless respects the independence of the International Criminal Court and its prosecuting authority,” he added.

In response, the Palestinian Foreign Ministry said, “The status of the State of Palestine at the international level as a state with all rights and duties, is not subject to the German president or his country’s opinion.”

The ministry urged the German minister to stop granting “Israel impunity from accountability and punishment, and considering it a state above the law.”

The ICC announced in March that it was opening an investigation into war crimes committed by ‘Israel’ in the occupied Palestinian territories.

A statement issued by the office of the former Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda said that the investigation will cover crimes committed since 13 June 2014 in the occupied West Bank, Gaza Strip and East Jerusalem.

“The investigation will cover crimes within the jurisdiction of the Court that are alleged to have been committed in the Situation since 13 June 2014, the date to which reference is made in the Referral of the Situation to my Office,” Bensouda said.

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