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Royal Committee for Jerusalem Affairs welcomes ICC ruling on jurisdiction in Palestinian territories

By JT - Feb 09,2021 - Last updated at Feb 09,2021

A photograph taken from the Mount of Olives on Tuesday shows a general view of the Old City of Jerusalem and the Dome of the Rock (AFP file photo)

AMMAN — The Royal Committee for Jerusalem Affairs on Tuesday welcomed the International Criminal Court (ICC) ruling stating the court has legal jurisdiction over the occupied Palestinian territories, which underlines the legitimacy of international resolutions.

The committee reaffirmed that Jordan and its Hashemite leadership, the historical custodian of Islamic and Christian holy sites in Jerusalem, will remain the defender of Palestinian rights including the right to establish an independent state on the 1967 borders, with East Jerusalem as its capital.

Based on legal and ethical principles and efforts to achieve global security and peace in accordance with the Rome Statute, the ICC had issued a decision stipulating its jurisdiction over the Palestinian territories occupied in 1967, which it defined as the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the Gaza Strip, the committee’s secretary general, Abdullah Kanaan, told the Jordan News Agency, Petra.

Kanaan added that the accession of the State of Palestine to the statute of the court came into effect in April 2015, allowing it to retroactively take legal action against Israeli crimes for the long decades of occupation and brutality.

The ICC ruling could lead to the arrest and criminal investigations of Israel’s political and military leaders accused of war crimes and genocide against unarmed Palestinian civilians, he noted.

The secretary general added that "this important decision" will enable the trial of Israel for the crimes of illegal settlement, Judaisation and attacks on Islamic and Christian holy sites, including the ongoing storming of the Al Aqsa Mosque and an attempt to burn down the Roman Orthodox Church in Jerusalem.

Kanaan added that all of these acts are “heinous crimes” that target the people, the land and the holy sites in addition to undermining the Arab civilisation and identity rooted in Palestine and Jerusalem.

Kanaan commended the Palestinian government's diplomacy for this "important judicial success", backed by Jordan, and underlining numerous international legitimacy resolutions, including UN Resolution 242 of 1967, which called on Israel, the occupying power, to withdraw from the occupied lands, and Resolution 2334 of 2016, which demanded Israel to halt settlement activity in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem. 

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