The Palestinian Authority is set to press the International Criminal Court on Tuesday to open a war crimes probe against Israel for settlement activity in the West Bank and east Jerusalem. According to its website, the court is now investigating 11 "situations", the bulk of them in sub-Saharan Africa, involving allegations of war crimes and crimes against humanity. The ministry says that Palestinian people "continue to suffer from ongoing, widespread and systematic crimes" committed by Israel.
Israel called the move "cynical" and claimed the request to the ICC has no legal validity.
We call on the global community to assume its legal, human and moral responsibilities to put an end to the decades-long Palestinian suffering by guaranteeing the rights of the Palestinian people under worldwide law and worldwide humanitarian law.
Palestinian foreign minister has requested the International Criminal Court to open an immediate investigation into Israel's settlements in the Palestinian territories and human rights violations..
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Referring to the Israeli army's killing of 111 Palestinian protesters in the Gaza Strip since March 30, Shakir told Al Jazeera: "The calculated killings of over 100 Palestinians in demonstrations in Gaza highlights the importance of the International Criminal Court prosecutor opening a formal investigation into serious crimes in Palestine".
The Palestinian Authority joined the ICC in January 2015, signing up to the Rome Statute which underpins the world's only permanent war crimes court.
The ICC has been conducting a probe since 2015 into alleged crimes in the disputed territories, including Israel's settlement policy and the 2014 Gaza conflict.
While the ICC can indict suspects, it has no police force and has to rely on cooperation from member states to enforce arrest warrants.
"The State of Palestine stresses the importance of achieving justice for the victims of crimes, reaffirms its commitment to cooperate fully with the Court and maintains that ensuring justice and accountability is crucial the integrity and credibility of the ICC itself".
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The Palestinians believe the settlement case to be their strongest to take to the ICC.
Worldwide law prohibits the transfer of civilian populations to occupied territories, and the global community overwhelmingly views the settlements as illegal.
Israel annexed east Jerusalem after capturing it in 1967 and considers it an inseparable part of its capital. It is in line with steps adopted by the State of Palestine over the past years, in pursuit of justice and accountability, including joining global human rights instruments.
Israel claims east Jerusalem as an inseparable part of its capital - though its annexation is not worldwide recognised. Israel withdrew its settlements and some 8,000 settlers from Gaza in 2005.
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