Photo Credit: UN Photo
Mahmoud Abbas at the UN in February 11, 2020

Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas is at last being ordered to decide, once and for all, whether in fact the Oslo Accords are still in force or not, and clarify what that means.

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The International Criminal Court at The Hague on Tuesday finally forced a decision on Abbas – who once again this month again declared (on May 19) that all agreements with Israel are null and void, as he has a number of times before – requesting this time he clarify whether the term “all agreements” includes the internationally-recognized 1993 Oslo Accords as well.

Abbas must respond by June 10 to the ICC query; ICC chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda is ordered to respond to his response by June 14.

A panel of three judges that comprises the pretrial chamber is tasked with ruling on the question of whether the Court has jurisdiction to open a criminal investigation into whether war crimes were committed in the territory of the Palestinian Authority.

On April 30, Bensouda wrote a 60-page document in which she stated her belief that the Court has jurisdiction over the “Occupied Palestinian Territory.”

The entire ICC document, without exception, appears to be an argument in defense of the position of the Palestinian Authority, rather than a dispassionate, objective analysis of the situation.

She concludes that she has “carefully considered observations of the participants and remains of the view that the Court has jurisdiction over the Occupied Palestinian Territory,” and thus requests Pre-Trial Chamber I to confirm that the “territory” over which the Court may exercise its jurisdiction. . . comprises “the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza.”

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