The International Criminal Court (ICC) has requested clarifications from the Palestinian Authority regarding its decision to end all agreements with Israel in light of the latter’s decision to annex a large part of the occupied Palestinian territory, according to a Palestinian Foreign Ministry official.
Omar Awadallah, head of the General Department of the United Nations, its Specialized Organizations and Human Rights in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates, confirmed that the Ministry has received a request from the ICC regarding President Mahmoud Abbas’ May 19 announcement that Palestine is absolved of all agreements with Israel.
He told WAFA that despite the President’s decision, the legal jurisdiction of the ICC in Palestine will not change.
The Court asked Palestine to “provide additional information on this matter, including with regard to the Oslo agreements between Palestine and Israel,” said Awadallah, noting that “the Court will shoulder its responsibilities as the party investigating the crimes in Palestine, and that the declaration will not affect Palestine’s status on the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital, along with the subsequent recognition by the countries of the world and the change of its status to an observer member in the United Nations in 2012.”
He stressed that under the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties, international legal actors have the right to either absolve themselves from agreements or end them.
He pointed out that the Palestinian response to the Court’s request will come no later than June 10, according to the Court’s procedures, and that it will be based on and confirmation of what was stated by the President in his May 19 speech in which he declared that Palestine is absolved of all agreements with the Israeli and US governments in response to the declaration of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that he will begin procedures for implementing the annexation of parts of the land of the State of Palestine by July 1, and that the occupying state, Israel, must bear all the responsibilities and obligations as an occupying power in the Palestinian territory.
The International Criminal Court has declared its competence to investigate possible crimes against Israel in the West Bank, Gaza Strip, and East Jerusalem.