British Prime Minister Boris Johnson affirmed in a letter published on Tuesday that the UK opposes the ICC investigation into alleged war crimes committed by Israel.
“We oppose the ICC investigation into war crimes in the Palestinian territories,” Johnson wrote in an April 9 letter to Conservative Friends of Israel, a pro-Israel British parliamentary group affiliated with the Conservative Party.
We do not accept the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court in this case because Israel is not a party to the Rome Statute and Palestine is not a sovereign state. This investigation gives the impression that it is a biased attack on a friend and ally of Britain.
Johnson was referring to earlier letters from the CFI calling on the prime minister to condemn the start of an ICC investigation. The International Criminal Court announced the investigations, in a decision issued on March 3. Israel, the United States, and other allies opposed this.
He also referred to the UK’s efforts to “reform” and “strengthen” the court, which is based in The Hague, pointing to the recent election of British citizens to hold key positions on the court. In June, Karim Khan – a British lawyer who is currently leading a United Nations investigation into war crimes committed by the Islamic State in Iraq – will replace Fatou Bensouda, the former prosecutor of the International Criminal Court responsible for the investigation against Israel.