Palestinians renew ICC push against Israel despite USA pressure

Palestinians renew ICC push against Israel despite USA pressure

The United States has given the Palestinian Authority security forces some $61 million in aid this year, according to the U.S. embassy for Israel.

The Trump administration dramatically ratchetted up its rhetoric by threatening sanctions if the court pursues investigations against the U.S., Israel or other allies. The PLO said it has held nine meetings and submitted around 10 letters and 11 communications to the ICC concerning the Israeli violations of human rights in Palestinian territories.

In May, a National Security Council spokesperson said the administration of U.S. President Donald Trump was considering closing the PLO mission after the P.A. called on the ICC to investigate Israeli building in Judea and Samaria, as well as riots on the Gaza border.

The Palestinian leadership cut off contact with the Trump administration after the U.S. president recognised the disputed city of Jerusalem as Israel's capital in December. "This action should not be exploited by those who seek to act as spoilers to distract from the imperative of reaching a peace agreement".

On Monday the United States also announced it would close the office of the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) in Washington for seeking to punish Israel through the International Criminal Court.

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As per the Wall Street journal national security adviser John Bolton is anticipated to render declaration.

The PLO is regarded as the representative of the Palestinians by the worldwide community and its chairman is Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas.

Palestinian officials, however, have ruled out any American role in the peace process since U.S. President Donald Trump unilaterally recognized Jerusalem as Israel's capital a year ago.

"Weaponizing humanitarian and developmental aid as political blackmail does not work", Ambassador Husam Zomlot said.

Notably, the office's closure comes shortly after the USA ended all funding for UNRWA, the UN's cash-strapped Palestinian refugee agency.

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The US recognition of Jerusalem being the capital of Israel last December and moving the US Embassy to Jerusalem last May reflected their total bias to the Israeli agenda, he affirmed.

"The Americans have damaged their credibility such that they are destroying any chance to convince Palestinian leaders to bring their constituents around to whatever idea they have". This framework was sustained with the blessing of the worldwide community and the active support of past U.S. administrations, Democratic and Republican, even under right-wing Israeli governments. Led by Jared Kushner, Trump's son-in-law and a senior aide, White House officials have been preparing a peace proposal they intend to put forward at an unspecified time.

Despite the mistrust, 53 per cent of respondents still support the idea of an independent Palestinian state in areas captured by Israel in the 1967 Mideast war, while only 24 per cent backed a solution of one state of Israelis and Palestinians together.

Vice President and Director of the Wilson Center's Middle East Program Aaron David Miller denounced the administration's decision and said it was an unprecedented and unwarranted punishment against Palestinians.

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