Lapid Says ICC 'Anti-Semitic' and 'Hypocritical'

Yesh Atid chairman blasts ICC for reopening Marmara investigation.

Orli Harari ,

Yair Lapid
Yair Lapid
Hezki Ezra

Yesh Atid chairman MK Yair Lapid on Thursday night described the International Criminal Court (ICC) as “anti-Semitic” and “hypocritical”, following its decision to reopen a case accusing Israel of "war crimes" in its handling of the May 2010 Mavi Marmara flotilla to Gaza.

"When it comes to Israel the hypocrisy is record-breaking," Lapid wrote on his Facebook page. "Five years ago naval fighters took over the Marmara. The terrorists on board attacked the IDF soldiers and during the altercation, nine of them were killed.”

"As usual,” he continued, “Israel's enemies tried to turn to the International Criminal Court, but its chief prosecutor examined the case and decided there was no place to open an investigation. Since then, more than a quarter million people have been killed in Syria, [and] 20,000 people have been killed in confrontations with Boko Haram in Africa.

"More than 30,000 have been killed in Afghanistan. About 14,000 in Libya. 6,500 in Ukraine. But the judges of the court in The Hague - which was set up to investigate mass atrocities, not local incidents of fighting terrorism - are apparently not interested in the fact that millions of people have been killed since the flotilla,” continued Lapid, who noted that it has already been proven that no war crime was committed on the Marmara, and yet the judges called on the prosecutor to reopen the investigation.

"Why? Because the world continues as usual with its new anti-Semitism, manifested in an attempt to discredit the IDF, the most moral army in the world,” wrote Lapid.

“We will not let them do that. We will defend our soldiers in the international field, just as they protect us on the battlefield. The Hague proved today it is a hypocritical institution that is tainted by anti-Semitism and hatred of Israel. There is no other explanation for its behavior,” he said.

In an unusual move, the ICC judges decided to investigate the previously closed case in which ten protesters who attacked IDF soldiers with lethal weapons were killed and Israeli troops were wounded.

The ICC called to "recheck" the decision not to investigate the IDF's naval commando Shayetet 13 storming of the Mavi Marmara, conducted after the flotilla ignored repeated demands to stand down and have Israel deliver its supposed humanitarian goods to Gaza, in defense of Israel's legal maritime blockade of Gaza.

Last year the ICC rejected a request for an official investigation by the Comoros, an island nation in Africa under whose flag several of the ships sailed.

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu earlier on Thursday condemned the decision as well, noting, "IDF soldiers acted in self defense while stopping an attempt to break a blockade carried out in accordance with international law as determined by the committee appointed by the UN Secretary General, a committee headed by a Supreme Court judge and international observers."

He condemned the ICC for choosing to single out Israel for cynical political reasons while Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad is massacring tens of thousands of his own people, hundreds are being executed in Iran and Hamas in Gaza uses children as human shields.

"In the face of this hypocrisy our troops will continue to protect us on the ground and we will defend them in the international arena," Netanyahu stressed.