Written by 10:49 World

What to Know About the ICC Arrest Warrants for Netanyahu and Hamas Leaders

The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court said on Monday that he had requested arrest warrants for war crimes and crimes against humanity for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel and the leaders of Hamas. Here’s a closer look at the court and the warrants.

The court’s prosecutor, Karim Khan, said in a statement that he was applying for arrest warrants for Yahya Sinwar, Mohammed Deif and Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas because he had “reasonable grounds to believe” that they were responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity, which included “the killing of hundreds of Israeli civilians” in the Hamas-led Oct. 7 attacks in Israel, and the taking of at least 245 hostages.

Mr. Khan said that the Hamas officials “planned and instigated the commission of crimes” on that day, and that they “have acknowledged their responsibility for those crimes” through their actions, such as personal visits to hostages shortly after their kidnapping.

The prosecutor cited accusations of murder, extermination, hostage-taking, and acts of sexual violence as war crimes. He also said he had reasonable grounds to believe the officials were responsible for acts of torture and cruel treatment.

Mr. Khan also said that he had requested arrest warrants for Mr. Netanyahu and Israel’s defense minister, Yoav Gallant, because there were reasonable grounds to believe that they bore responsibility for war crimes and crimes against humanity, including the starvation of civilians as a weapon of war and “intentionally directing attacks against a civilian population.”

Mr. Khan said that these crimes were committed “as part of a widespread and systematic attack against the Palestinian civilian population.” He also said that in his office’s view, some of the crimes “continue to this day.”

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Last modified: 22 May 2024
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