Thursday, 1 January 2015

Abbas moves for Palestine to join 18 international treaties

President Mahmoud Abbas signed letters to join nearly 20 international treaties -- including the Rome Statute that guarantees accession to the International Criminal Court -- Wednesday night, only a day after the UN Security Council rejected a resolution supporting an end to the Israeli occupation.

"We want to complain about the harm caused to us and to our land," Abbas said in a statement aired on state TV before he signed the agreements, according to Palestinian official news agency Wafa.

"But who shall we complain to? The Security Council refused our request. Where will we go? To the international organizations," he added.

The ICC can prosecute individuals accused of genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes, and Palestinian plans to become a party to the court have been strongly opposed by Israel and the United States.

The move would allow Palestine to prosecute Israel for crimes committed during the summer offensive that left around 2,200 Palestinians dead and 110,000 homeless in the Gaza Strip.

Abbas argued that the Palestinians demand a just resolution the conflict, and given the UN's failure to act they were forced to seek help through international legal treaties. more