Washington, DC (STL.News) Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken released the following statement:
Today, the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), whose term ends in June, confirmed the opening of an investigation into the Palestinian situation. The United States firmly opposes and is deeply disappointed by this decision. The ICC has no jurisdiction over this matter. Israel is not a party to the ICC and has not consented to the Court’s jurisdiction, and we have serious concerns about the ICC’s attempts to exercise its jurisdiction over Israeli personnel. The Palestinians do not qualify as a sovereign state and therefore, are not qualified to obtain membership as a state in, participate as a state in, or delegate jurisdiction to the ICC.
The Prosecutor’s statement acknowledges some of the many reasons why the ICC will first take its time to determine its priorities, given its limited resources and other challenges, and not proceed to conduct any investigative activity related to this situation. She has previously recognized that “it would be contrary to judicial economy to carry out an investigation in the judicially untested jurisdictional context of this situation only to find out subsequently that relevant legal bases were lacking.” As she acknowledges, that very possibility remains as likely today as ever.