Erekat: We'll 'drown' ICC with names of victims

PLO official says PA will hand ICC a detailed list of Arab victims of Israeli "war crimes".

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Saeb Erekat
Saeb Erekat

Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Secretary General Saeb Erekat on Saturday said that the Palestinian Authority (PA) would submit to the International Criminal Court (ICC) a list of Arab victims of Israeli “war crimes”.

“We will present the International Criminal Court in The Hague with a detailed list of the names of the victims who were harmed by Israel over the years,” Erekat said in an interview with Al-Arabiya.

“We will drown the court with the full names of every Palestinian man and woman who were exposed to injury and damage,” he vowed.

His comments come a day after the ICC chief prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, decided to open a full investigation into alleged Israeli “war crimes” in PA-controlled territories.

Bensouda said she is “satisfied that there is a reasonable basis to proceed with an investigation into the situation in Palestine” and urged judges to rule on the court's jurisdiction "without undue delay".

The prosecutor added however that she did not require any authorization from judges to open a probe as there had been a referral from the Palestinian Authority, which joined the court in 2015 and has since filed a series of legal complaints with it against Israel.

On Friday, Erekat welcomed the ICC probe, saying, “Israel’s hysterical reaction is that of a state that has put itself above international law, with a system of laws aimed at normalizing the situation of perpetual occupation, colonial-settlements and annexation, all of them inconsistent with international law.”

“While Israel, the occupying power, insists on violating its obligations under international law and UN resolutions, Palestine will provide all the required support and cooperation to the court, as it has done since its accession to the Rome Statute and the start of the preliminary investigation,” he added.

PA chairman Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday welcomed the ICC probe as well and called it a “big day” for Palestinian Arabs.

"This day is a big day because we have achieved what we wanted, which means that from today the ICC will begin to receive the cases we forwarded to it. This is a historic day, and from now on any Palestinian wounded as a result of the occupation can file a lawsuit," he said.