Breaking news. ICC prosecutor seeks arrest warrants for Netanyahu and Hamas leaders

The Chief Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court said he is seeking arrest warrants for Israeli and Hamas leaders, including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. 

Karim Khan said that Netanyahu, Israel’s Defence Minister Yoav Gallant and three other Hamas leaders — Yehya Sinwar, Mohammed Deif and Ismail Haniyeh — were responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity. 

Amongst other alleged crimes, a statement issued by the ICC accused Netanyahu and Gallant of using starvation of civilians as a method of warfare and “intentionally directing attacks against a civilian population as a war crime”. 

Sinwar, Al-Masri and Haniyeh were accused of murder as a crime against humanity, acts of sexual violence and taking hostages as a war crime. 

Khan has said that there is ground to believe the men involved bear responsibility for war crimes from the start of Israel’s military action in Gaza. 

He added that “the effects of the use of starvation as a method of warfare, together with other attacks and collective punishment against the civilian population of Gaza, are acute, visible and widely known.” He also said that Hamas’s actions on 7 October “demand accountability”.

The ICC — which is based in The Hague — has been investigating Israel’s actions in Gaza for the past three years.

In the past, Khan has taken part in major international war crimes and crimes against humanity cases, including those in the former Yugoslavia, Rwanda, Cambodia and Lebanon.

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