Destruction of Lebanon July 2006 - Call for Investigation and Possible Prosecution of WAR CRIMES by the International Criminal Court
To: The Office of the Prosecutor, International Criminal Court, The Hague
From: Dr. Yvonne Schmidt (K.Franzens Univ-Graz)*
Subject: Destruction of Lebanon July 2006 - Call for Investigation and Possible Prosecution of WAR CRIMES by the International Criminal Court
Dear Sir or Madam,
I understand that under the Rome Statute members of the Public may refer to your attention alleged major war crimes for investigation and possible prosecution.
I note that under the Rome Statute you are empowered to consider such crimes. I further note that the very existence of your court helps to prevent such crimes by serving notice that these cannot in future be carried out with total impunity.
I note that the Rome Statute directs your consideration to "the most serious crimes of international concern," and that Article 8 of the above Statute stipulates: "The Court shall have jurisdiction in respect of war crimes in particular when committed as part of a plan or policy or as part of a large-scale commission of such crimes". Furthermore that 'for the purposes of this Statute, "war crimes" means ...(iv) 'Extensive destruction ... not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly." And that furthermore "other serious violations" include "intentionally directing attacks against civilian objects, that is, objects which are not military objectives."
I further note that these actions are, as the Statute requires, part of a "plan". Israeli military authorities have publicly stated this, saying their plan requires many more days or weeks of continuing military action and destruction. Their plan has already resulted in what the Lebanese government have called a 'catastrophe' inflicted on their civilian population, one that is continuing to create havoc and grave suffering, driving hundreds of thousands from their homes, destroying much of the civilian infrastructure of Lebanon.
I am therefore convinced that these crimes meet the requirements for action of the Rome Statute. I thus urgently ask that you immediately initiate research with a view to seeing if a prosecution is called for, into the current devastating bombing and shelling of the state of Lebanon, including of its roads and road traffic, power stations, airports and sea ports, bridges and homes, by the political and military leadership of the State of Israel.
I further request that if you decide to consider this, you make this immediately public. I ask in the hope that this will help in a small way to deter further crimes and help bring about a cessation of the current hostilities.
I am persuaded that, given your previous actions relating to war crimes committed elsewhere, no politician or general engaged in war crimes would wish to be submitted to your scrutiny.
I am aware that the State of Israel signed the Statute setting up your court.
I look forward to your response,
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| The Office of the
Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court answered with a letter,
dated Dec 1, 2006:
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|* "Foundations of Civil and Political Rights in Israel and the Occupied Territories", Dissertation by Mag. Dr. iur. Yvonne Schmidt (Vienna 2001), published as E-Book and in printed Form by GRIN Verlag; ISBN 978-3-638-05173-6.|