Palestine mulls filing complaint to Int’l Criminal Court against U.S. ambassador to Israel

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RAMALLAH, June 9 (Xinhua) — Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Sunday that it is planning to file a complaint to the International Criminal Court (ICC) against U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman, who said annexing parts of the West Bank is Israeli right.

In its press statement, the ministry described Friedman’s remarks as a reflection of the U.S. bias toward the Israeli occupation.

A day earlier, Friedman told the New York Times that it is the right of Israel to annex parts of the West Bank territories, and blamed the Palestinian Authority for the current stalemate in the peace process with Israel.

The Palestinian statement slammed Friedman as a “settler supporter” who is “illogical and unjust,” adding the U.S. ambassador “is eager to defend the occupation state (Israel) by all means.”

Friedman’s remarks were vastly condemned by Palestinian officials.

On Saturday, the Palestinian Authority spokesman Ibrahim Milhem said Friedman’s statement is “outlawed and comes in line with the Israeli policies.”

“The vision of the American side to annex occupied territories is a war crime according to the international law,” wrote Saeb Erekat, secretary general of Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Executive Committee, on Twitter.

The Palestinian Authority has been boycotting the U.S. government since it recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in December 2017 and moved its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem in May 2018.

Meanwhile, the U.S. government has taken several steps against the Palestinians, including shutting down the PLO office in Washington, cutting aid to both the Palestinians and the UN agency providing support for the Palestinian refugees.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has repeatedly called for an international multilateral mechanism to overlook the potential peace process.

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