The Israeli judicial system backs the prime minister and the defence minister

Amit Eisman. Wikipedia, Haifa U

The decision of the prosecutor at the International Criminal Court of Justice in The Hague, Karim Khan, to request the issuing of international arrest warrants against Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defence Minister Yoav Galant, leads Israel to a full-scale confrontation with the court. The prosecutor accuses Israel’s leaders of “deliberate killing” and “tactics of starvation” as crimes against humanity – claims that are very vague and without sufficient legal basis – all while placing them in line with Muhammad Dief, Yahya Sinwar and Ismail Haniyeh, leaders of the Hamas movement, to create an obscene symmetry between Israel and the terrorist organization.

At first, the struggle focused on the diplomatic arena including extensive attempts to pressure the court and damage its powers. Israel itself is not under the jurisdiction of the court because it is not a signatory to the Rome treaty, and efforts were made through the American administration and Israel’s Western allies. But now the Israeli legal system is also joining the struggle. Israel’s legal system, being independent and strong and bringing war crimes to justice within the country – serves as the “life vest” of the State of Israel for such situations. Indeed, as a democratic state, the ICC’s mistrust of the Israeli legal system is almost a personal insult – certainly enough to unite those who, until last year, were seen as bitter political opponents.

On Wednesday, a joint opinion of the legal advisor to the government Gali Behrabi-Miyara and State Attorney Amit Eisman was published: “The State of Israel is a democratic state, which fights terrorism and protects its security while adhering to the legal rules that are binding and with a deep commitment to the law. The security forces, and the IDF in general, fight out of full commitment to the rules of international law… The Attorney General and the State of Israel’s Attorney’s Office thoroughly examine any serious claim of breach of law by any of the State of Israel’s officials and enforce the law… As the State of Israel has made clear over the years, the court lacks any authority to conduct an investigation on the matter. In any case, the request in the International Criminal Court to issue arrest warrants against the prime minister and the defence minister is baseless.”

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