Once the Palestinians become plaintiffs against Israel in the International Criminal Court, “they will become defendants as well,” an Israeli legal expert told The Algemeiner on Wednesday.
The comments came after the Palestinian Authority on Tuesday referred Israel to the ICC on charges of alleged war crimes. The move is the latest salvo in a years-long effort by the PA to join the Court and damage Israel legally.
Later on Tuesday, US State Department Spokeswoman Heather Nauert expressed opposition to the move, saying, “We have long believed that these types of actions are not conducive to peace. … We oppose the actions taking place against Israel at the International Criminal Court because we see that simply as counterproductive.” Neither the US nor Israel are members of the Court.
The Israeli Foreign Ministry stated that it takes a “severe view” of the Palestinian move, calling it “a cynical step without legal validity” and an attempt to “exploit the Court for political purposes.” It also called the referral “legally invalid,” and asserted that “the ICC lacks jurisdiction over the Israeli-Palestinian issue, since Israel is not a member of the Court and because the Palestinian Authority is not a state.”