Bolton To Set Out Tough U.S. Stance On International Criminal Court

Trump administration to close Palestinian leadership's office in a bid to mount pressure over peace deal

The United States declined to join the court during Mr.

The United States will threaten to impose sanctions on International Criminal Court (ICC) judges if they go ahead with an investigation into alleged war crimes committed by us personnel in Afghanistan, Reuters reports.

Zomlot added shuttering the office is an affront to peace process and charged the US of "undermining the global system of legitimacy and legality".

"We will consider taking steps in the UN Security Council to constrain the court's sweeping powers, including to ensure that the ICC does not exercise jurisdiction over Americans and the nationals of our allies that have not ratified the Rome Statute", says Bolton's draft text. "We are moving toward a situation the Americans abandoned even the rhetorical commitment to the Oslo process ... what they are going to do is present a deal so unacceptable to the Palestinians and use it as a further pretext to shut down any mechanisms for peace negotiations beyond the Oslo lines".

"The United States will use any means necessary to protect our citizens and those of our allies from unjust prosecution by this illegitimate court".

The accusation of breaking the US law came after Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas said in a September United Nations General Assembly speech that the Palestinians had "called on the International Criminal Court to open an investigation and to prosecute Israeli officials for their involvement in settlement activities and aggressions against our people".

The US will close the Palestine Liberation Organisation's mission in Washington, the state department says.

In a statement responding to Bolton's attack, The Hague-based court defended its independence and impartiality, with the backing of 123 nations.

The speech continued with Bolton describing the ICC as an "illegitimate" investigative body that failed to adequately prosecute illegal activity overseas despite its "dangerous" levels of unchecked accountability.

"The ICC, as a court of law, will continue to do its work undeterred, in accordance with those principles and the overarching idea of the rule of law", it said.

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He also cited a recent move by Palestinian leaders to have Israeli officials prosecuted at the ICC for human rights violations.

According to Al Jazeera, the ICC claimed in 2016 that US soldiers and Central Intelligence Agency operatives used torture against detainees in Afghanistan, primarily between 2003 and 2004.

The United States is not a member of the worldwide tribunal that is based in the Netherlands, but American citizens can still face prosecution if they commit war crimes in one of the court's member states, which includes Afghanistan.

"This misguided and harmful policy will only further isolate the United States from its closest allies and give solace to war criminals and authoritarian regimes seeking to evade global accountability", the ACLU said. They have since rejected the U.S.as peace broker.

The United States will withdraw all support from the International Criminal Court, National Security Adviser John Bolton announced Monday, condemning the body as an "assault" on the U.S. Constitution and American sovereignty. "The boorishness of this rogue USA regime seems to know no bounds".

The national security adviser also stressed ICC has no legitimate claim over USA citizens.

The court, however, does not have the capacity to arrest suspects and depends on member states for their cooperation.

There has also been talk of adding "ecocide" to the list of crimes the court can prosecute, a move seen by Bolton as part of an unspoken agenda to intimidate decision makers in the United States and other democratic societies. Others have quit: Burundi and the Philippines, whose departure, announced earlier this year, takes effect next March.

"We will take the following steps, among others, in accordance with the American Service-Members' Protection Act and our other legal authorities". In 2002, Bolton, then a State Department official, traveled to NY to ceremonially "unsign" the Rome Statute at the United Nations. Last November Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas used his speech at the United Nations to call for the investigation and prosecution of Israeli officials by the International Criminal Court (ICC).

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