Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Monday, November 19th, 2018

ICC Prosecutor Seeks War Crime

ICC Prosecutor Seeks  War Crime

KABUL - The chief prosecutor for the ICC plans to examine war crimes in Afghanistan, including those committed by the U.S. military and CIA.
Fatou Bensouda, chief prosecutor for the International Criminal Court (ICC), said in a statement that she plans to pursue a formal investigation into war crimes committed in Afghanistan.
Ms. Bensouda’s statement said that "there is a reasonable basis to believe that war crimes and crimes against humanity have been committed in connection with the armed conflict in Afghanistan."
The statement continues that Bensouda’s investigation will examine events that took place after May 2003, "as well as war crimes closely linked to the situation in Afghanistan allegedly committed since 1 July 2002 on the territory of other States Parties to the Rome Statute."
The investigation will not only examine instances of war crimes committed by the Taliban and Afghan government, but also the United States, which has maintained a presence in the country since 2001.
The ICC has already launched a preliminary investigation into Afghanistan that lasted nearly a decade, which examined attacks against civilians, disappearances, summary and extra-judicial executions and arbitrary imprisonment.
"Following a meticulous preliminary examination of the situation, I have come to the conclusion that all legal criteria required to commence an investigation have been met", Ms Bensouda said.
While the U.S. is not a member of the ICC, Bensouda still claims jurisdiction because Afghanistan is a member. Jurisdiction extends to countries where crimes are committed, regardless of the perpetrator’s status in the ICC.
This would mark the first time that the U.S. would be held accountable for war crimes committed in Afghanistan, although the U.S. has held its own soldiers accountable on extremely rare occasions.
In 2011, Staff Sergeant Calvin Gibbs was sentenced to life with the possibility of parole for his role in the murder of three Afghan civilians that he called "savages." Gibbs led a "kill team" that collected body parts of murder victims as trophies.
Major Rob Stelle, a military prosecutor, said to the court:
"Sergeant Gibbs had a charisma, he had a 'follow me' personality. But it was all a bunch of crap, he had his own mission: murder and depravity. No one died before Sergeant Gibbs showed up."
The Guardian noted at the time that Gibbs could be out of prison in less than 10 years if he were granted parole. (Monitoring Desk)