Mexico, Chile Urge ICC to Investigate War crimes in Gaza since 7 October

Mexico, Chile Urge ICC to Investigate War crimes in Gaza since 7 October

A demonstrator poses with a Palestinian flag outside the International Criminal Court, ICC, during a rally urging the court to prosecute Israel's army for war crimes, in The Hague, Netherlands. (File photo: AP)

Mexico and Chile submitted a case Thursday concerning Israel and Palestine to the International Criminal Court (ICC) asking it to investigate the crimes committed against Palestinians.

Mexico's Foreign Ministry upheld the ICC as the ideal forum to investigate the ongoing conflict in Palestine, citing the Court as the most suitable body to potentially establish criminal responsibility for any offender.

"Mexico and Chile's action follows growing concern over the latest escalation of violence, particularly against civilian targets, and the alleged continued commission of crimes under the Court's jurisdiction, specifically since the October 7, 2023 attack by Hamas militants and subsequent hostilities in Gaza," it said in a statement.

It cited "numerous United Nations reports" that have documented different instances of violence that may constitute crimes within the jurisdiction of the ICC under the Rome Statute.

In addition, Mexico said Palestine cannot investigate or prosecute possible crimes committed on its territory or by its nationals due to the near-total collapse of its national justice infrastructure.

But neither Israel nor the US are affiliated with the ICC, meaning the Court has no jurisdiction over either state or actions taken within their territories.

Mexico said the conflict could be steered toward a peaceful resolution by referring the case to the ICC while endorsing a two-state solution.

"Mexico reiterates its commitment to international justice, the prevention of genocide and other war crimes and crimes against humanity. It also trusts that these actions, based on the peaceful settlement of disputes, can open spaces for an immediate ceasefire and contribute to paving the way for lasting peace in the region based on the solution of two States living side by side within secure and internationally recognized borders," it said.

After more than 100 days of violence, Israel's attacks have resulted in the deaths of at least 24,448 Palestinians in Gaza and 61,504 injured as of Jan. 17. 

The ICC is an independent judiciary body separate from the UN and was founded in 2002 under the umbrella of the Rome Statue, which investigates international crimes such as genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.

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