Palestine urges ICC to open probe into ‘Israel crimes’

The Hague, May 22 (IANS) The Palestinian National Authority (PNA) on Tuesday petitioned the International Criminal Court (ICC) to open an investigation into Israel’s settlement policy on the West Bank and the recent actions of the Israeli armed forces against protesters in the Gaza Strip that killed over 60 people.

Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki met ICC chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda here, urging him to open an official probe and send a team of investigators to collect evidence in the West Bank and in the Gaza Strip in order to build a case against Israel, a spokesperson for the PNA told Efe news.

On May 14, Israeli troops opened fire on thousands of Palestinian protesters gathered at the buffer zone between Israel and the Gaza Strip in a mass demonstration, dubbed the “March of the Great Return”, symbolizing the inability of many Palestinian refugees to return to their land.

The Israeli Army killed at least 61 people, including several children and injured over 2,000 but insisted that the protests were called by the Islamist militant group Hamas, in power in the Gaza Strip since 2007.

It coincided with the opening ceremony of the US embassy in Jerusalem, a controversial move by President Donald Trump given that Palestinians envision East Jerusalem, occupied by Israel since 1967, to be a future capital of the State of Palestine.

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