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Netanyahu should give self up to ICC says ex registrar

Netanyahu should give self up to ICC says ex registrar

No one is above the law Silvana Arbia tells La Stampa

ROME, 21 May 2024, 15:13

ANSA English Desk



Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu should give himself up to the International Criminal Court in The Hague, Italian former ICC registrar Silvana Arbia told La Stampa daily in an interview on Tuesday a day after the court's prosecutor requested war crime indictments for Israeli and Hamas leaders.
    "It would be a good thing for Netanyahu and the other suspects to give themselves up," said 71-year-old Potenza-born Arbia, also a former prosecutor at the United Nations Rwanda Tribunal.
    "As long as the international community organises with laws, no one cam consider themselves above them," Arbia told the Turin daily.
    "Neither Netanyahu, nor Biden, nor any soldier, commander, civilian leader.
    "Of course, now Bibi is n longer a person free to move like before. He is most definitely more isolated." If ICC Chief Prosecutor Karim Khan's indictment requests for crimes against humanity are upheld, the Israeli prime minister will no longer be free to travel to most allied countries except the United States, which has not signed up to the court for fear of losing legal sovereignty and for fear of its citizens being prosecuted for war crimes.
    Arbia said she thought the ICC justices would uphold Khan's requests.
    "I expect so. The Pre-Trial Chamber has to assess whether the crimes in question come under the ICC's competence, and they clearly do.
    "Then, it must examine the evidence presented by the prosecutor.
    "And it has to evaluate whether an arrest warrant is necessary to ensure the presence of the defendant at the trial, it must prevent the defendant creates obstacles and hampering the investigation, and it must avert the reiteration of the crimes", said Arbia.
    The ICC prosecutor on Monday requested the arrest of top Hamas figures, including the group's leader in Gaza Yahya Sinwar, over the horrendous October 7 attacks, and for Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and its defence minister over its relentless war against Hamas and the impact on civilians in Gaza.


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