USA threatens to prosecute International Criminal Court judges

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The ICC was created to be permanent and independent of national governments as it investigated war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide.

Akwei said Bolton's rhetoric and threats toward the ICC "sends a risky signal that the United States is hostile to human rights and the rule of law".

National security adviser John Bolton calls on a reporter during a news conference after speaking at a Federalist Society luncheon at the Mayflower Hotel, Monday, Sept. 10, 2018, in Washington.

In a speech Monday, John Bolton said Washington would not cooperate with The Hague-based court and threatened it with sanctions, saying it put US sovereignty and national security at risk. We will provide not assistance to the ICC, and we certainly will not join the ICC.

He added that the U.S. would "not allow the ICC, or any other organisation, to constrain Israel's right to self-defence" or to "defend citizens from terrorist attacks". Their leadership has already roundly rejected those moves, saying the USA has lost its role as a peacemaker because of it.

If such an inquiry goes ahead, the Trump administration will consider banning judges and prosecutors from entering the United States, put sanctions on any funds they have in the USA financial system and prosecute them in American courts, Bolton said.

At the time the USA decried the ICC's for considering prosecuting the US, but there was no serious attention at a coming confrontation until Bolton was appointed last March.

Bolton noted that the US government never signed the treaty creating the court and does not recognize it.

The US administration has said it will refuse to help global prosecutors in any way with their investigations into alleged war crimes.

He said the administration would consider blocking ICC judges and prosecutors from entering the U.S., prevent them from launching legal proceedings, sanction funds and prosecute them in USA courts if they pursue claims against the US.

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The man's motives were unknown and nothing was being ruled out, regional government press officer Christelle Monteagudo said. He also wasn't on the country's watchlist for suspected radicalization.

Saeb Erekat, secretary general of the Palestine Liberation Organization, said the Palestinians have asked the Hague-based ICC to investigate the Israeli army's planned razing of Khan al-Ahmar near Jerusalem.

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An ICC prosecutor requested in November 2017 to open an investigation into alleged war crimes committed by the US military in Afghanistan, especially over the abuse of detainees.

On Monday, the US State Department confirmed it was shutting the Palestinian diplomatic mission in Washington, accusing Ramallah of not supporting peace talks with Israel.

He said the court is a threat to American sovereignty and national security, arguing that that the court has very little accountability and that its definitions of crimes are "vague and subject to wide-ranging interpretation".

He said the U.S. was prepared to slap financial sanctions and criminal charges on officials of the court if they proceed against any Americans.

President Donald Trump's national security adviser, John Bolton, is to make the announcement in a speech in Washington.

Jerusalem says the ICC lacks jurisdiction because Israel is not a member of the court.

It also stressed that it would only investigate and prosecute crimes when states would not or could not do so. Former President Bill Clinton signed the convention in 2000, but it was never presented to Congress for ratification and former President George W. Bush unsigned the statute in 2002. "The American president is encouraging terror and extremism with his policies that could lead to violence in the region, which will explode in the faces of Israel and the U.S".

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