A month ago, the International Criminal Court (ICC) ruled that it has jurisdiction over the West Bank, East Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip -- territories under Israeli occupation since 1967. Today, as expected, ICC Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda confirmed her intention to open a criminal investigation into actions of Israelis and Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip that are suspected as war crimes. The actions that will be investigated include Israel’s policy of constructing settlements in the occupied West Bank.
As we noted in the past, APN sees these developments as a sobering reminder for Israel’s leadership and for the Israeli public that the occupation, the settlements, and the ongoing military rule over a large civilian population are untenable.
The ICC’s decision is a clear example of the fact that the international community will not tolerate the occupation. Neither will Americans for Peace Now or the many progressive American Jews who support our organization and Israel’s peace movement. Neither, of course, should Israeli citizens.
Israel’s occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip raises many questions regarding apparent violations of international law. But the problem, at its core, is political. And so is the solution.
Together with our sister organization, Shalom Achshav, Israel’s Peace Now movement, we at APN will continue pushing for such a solution and will continue to educate and advocate – both in Israel and in the United States – for ending the occupation, for peace, and for justice.