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Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., called for the United States to join the Intercontinental Prison Court docket in gentle of Russia’s alleged war crimes in Ukraine, expressing that America’s refusal to be a part of is “antithetical to our commitment to human legal rights.”
The Minnesota Congresswoman, who fled her home region to escape the Somali Civil War when she was 8 a long time old, introduced expenses very last week that would also codify the Point out Department’s Office environment of World Prison Justice and repeal the Hague Invasion Act, which prohibits the United States from assisting the Worldwide Criminal Courtroom.
“Like many of us, I have recoiled in horror at stories of massacres, focusing on of civilians, mass graves, and rapes by Russian forces,” Omar stated in a statement. “Unfortunately, the U.S. is not social gathering to the Worldwide Prison Courtroom, the principal physique responsible for investigating and prosecuting these crimes.”
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The Netherlands-dependent Intercontinental Prison Court was established 20 years in the past by an worldwide treaty to prosecute war crimes and other significant offenses.
The U.S. has extensive stored the court at arm’s-duration, a position that hardened under the Trump administration.
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But now that President Biden has termed Putin a “war legal” and stated his invasion of Ukraine amounts to a “genocide,” Omar and other lawmakers say that the U.S. should be part of the ICC.
“It would be staggeringly hypocritical to support an ICC investigation into Russia, although opposing the court’s incredibly existence as a non-member,” Omar instructed Insider.
The ICC has opened an investigation into war crimes in Ukraine, but Russia, like the United States, is not a member of the court docket.
As Russian forces pulled again from the Ukrainian money of Kyiv, satellite illustrations or photos and journalists cataloged the stunning mass graves and murdered civilians who were being left behind.
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Secretary of State Antony Blinken also cited Russian shelling of “apartment structures, educational institutions, hospitals, essential infrastructure, civilian autos, buying centers, and ambulances,” as well as “assaults deliberately focusing on civilians.”
The Online News 72h contributed to this report.