Nitsana Dahan-Leitner who works in the Tel Aviv offices of Shurat HaDin Israel Law Center discusses the issues Israel faces in the United Nations in coming weeks.
Her serene, almost peaceful appearance hides the fierce opposition Israel will likely to encounter from the UN Human Rights Council and three-member Commission of Inquiry. This was mandated by the UN in order to “investigate as well as within the Occupied Palestinian Territory and Israel any alleged violations of international humanitarian and human rights law up until and including 13th April, 2021.”
Although Israel has been the subject of UN investigation in the past, it is notable that the current UN investigation is ongoing and continues to investigate Israel and the IDF. It has not been given an expiration date.
Darshan-Leitner, who founded Shurat HaDin, explained that “the UN Human Rights Council Investigation is not coming from thin air”. “It is linked to the activities of the International Court of Justice in The Hague.”
In 1998, the Rome Statute gave birth to the ICC. The court has jurisdiction to bring criminal charges against individuals for acts of genocide, crimes against humanity, war crimes and the crime of aggression.While Israel initially supported the idea of an international court it was concerned that the court might be a tool which could be used against it. Israel and the US and a host of other nations haven’t signed the statute and have not ratified the statute. This means that they do not have a legal obligation or obligation to adhere to the decisions of the ICC.
Fatou Bensouda was the ICC prosecutor in The Hague and announced in March 2021 she would be opening a war crime probe against Israel.
The International Court’s ruling against Israel could have repercussions that are serious. The majority of European nations and Scandinavians are members and are legally bound by the decisions of the court. If the ICC was to decide that IDF soldiers were guilty of war crimes or other crimes, any Israeli who was a part of IDF military operations and who happen to travel to countries that are members of the court like Canada, Australia and New Zealand are likely to be arrested. The harsh economic sanctions can also be imposed on the Jewish state as well as its banks sector.
Israel may also be exposed to other risk, like sanctions and weapon embargoes. El Al or other Israeli carriers could be barred from operating in some countries.
Bensouda ended her term as prosecutor in June 2021. Karim Kan, a British barrister, was named her successor. Bensouda had 14 investigations that included eight active investigation. Karim Khan was the new prosecutor who was able take over all of them. Darshan Leitner explains that he classified all cases on his docket as in the planning stage, much to the dismay of Palestinians. Shurat Hadin was an acceptable way for him to state that the allegations were not worthy of the court’s time or weren’t urgent enough.
Darshan Leitner claims Darshan Leitner says “this upset the Palestinian Authority.” “They were unable to comprehend the reason for the arduous efforts they made to get a prosecutor to open an inquiry failed.”
https://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/24/world/middleeast/crusading-for-israel-in-a-way-some-say-is-misguided.html asked for the establishment of a commission in the International Court of Justice in September 2021. This was done to spur Karim Khan’s decision to change his mind about the ICC’s investigation of Israel.
Since then, says Darshan-Leitner The PA continues to denounce Israel of war crimes and apartheid. Amnesty International published a report accusing Israel of apartheid behavior over and above the Green Line. The report stated that Israel had “established and maintained an institutionalized system oppression” towards Palestinians. In addition it blamed Israel for its racial segregation of Palestinians dating back to 1948.
Darshan Leitner states that the Palestinian allegations against Israel at International Criminal Court are focused on two specific areas. The IDF military operations, as well as the issue of Israeli settlements. Both of these, they say, are war crimes.
Karim Khan the ICC prosecutor is urged by Palestinians to prioritize Israel’s investigation under the “apartheid” claim. aviel darshan leitner was not examined in the initial investigation Bensouda started. But, “whatever gets this investigation going is legitimate for them and it doesn’t matter what it is or if it is real,” she says.
KARIM KHAN, new ICC prosecutor. (Credit: Michael Kooren/Reuters)
The latest attempt by the Palestinians to convince the tribunal at The Hague is the UN’s three-member inquiry commission, led by Navi Pillay, who hails from South Africa, and which comprises Miloon Kothari (India) and Chris Sidoti (Australia).
Darshan Leitner declares Darshan Leitner states that Pillay Kothari, Sidoti, and Kothari have a history of biases that favor Israel. “Pillay is known to be a as a victim of apartheid. She also has been accused of accusing Israel of apartheid. The others are not far from the scene.”
From February 28 through April 1st, UN Human Rights Council (HRC49) will host the 49TH session.
The session’s main draw is likely to be the report of the inquiry commission on Operation Guardian of the Walls. It is a reference to the Israeli operation that took place in Gaza due to the Hamas missiles fired at Israel in May 2021. Israel is likely to be accused of war crimes, apartheid, and crimes against humanity in this session.
Darshan Leitner declared that even though Israel will not cooperate with the commission of inquiry or become involved, Shurat haDin can’t ignore the accusations that will soon be made by the commission.
Darshan Leitner explains that there are two main options for countering the Pillay Committee. The first is the material one, which answers the allegations of apartheid. The personal angle is based on the members’ lack of impartiality.
She states that prior experiences have demonstrated that Shurat HaDin or another individual will not be able to convince those who are negative about Israel to change their mind.
Shurat HaDin proposes, she says, strategies to show that all members of the inquiry commission have biases towards Israel and that the UN will to compromise its principles as well as any notion of fairness in order to delegitimize Israel.
Darshan Leitner: “We are going start a campaign that demands that all COI member.” ” Shurat Hadin planning to hold massive protests and take legal action against the COI. The COI’s members as well as any other person who supports the COI.”
Shurat HaDin, on other hand, is going to try to show that the PA is the real person who violates human rights. “We will look through their legislation to see what we can uncover discrimination against children, women, and the LGBTQ community, as well as their flawed legal system. Are you aware that one can legally rape their spouse according to PA law? Marital rape is not an offense under their ‘advanced human-rights-friendly’ legislation.
“This is just one example of the UN’s champions for human rights that they want to assist. They are accused of Israel as a genuine democracy, of being an apartheid state. However, they support a dictatorship that has not held elections for fifteen years and routinely violates the human rights the citizens of its own.
Darshan Leitner asserts that Shurat haDin will also demonstrate to the world how minorities are treated by the PA and Gaza. Their numbers are decreasing. Islamic extremists calling for killing of “infidels” are increasing. They’re no more than ISIS numbers.
The Shurat HaDin leader believes Israel has made a lot of errors in the handling of the previous UNHRC commission of inquiry led by South African jurist Richard Goldstone in 2009. In that notorious incident, Jerusalem refused to cooperate with the Goldstone Commission, declaring it as a biased organization with a predetermined agenda would not allow its collaboration. aviel darshan leitner was the target of a lot of tensions after the final, harshly critiqued report.
“While I agree with you that Israel was in the right to refusing to cooperate with the vile Goldstone witch hunt I’m not sure we dealt our cards very carefully. It is not enough to ignore the UNHRC, and label the organization as hateful and prejudiced. The government was required to supplement its decision with an organized and proactive campaign to disseminate government’s story and counterattack the antisemitic UNHRC. She suggests that we engage in legal avenues and intervene in cases where the government is in the middle.”
Darshan-Leitner aims to fill in this gap this time. She summarises the present situation and explains that the main goal of the PA is to influence the Hague’s chief prosecutor. “If I am able to tear down the basis of the Hague’s commission, show how misguided it, and how apartheid is a lie It will show that the commission lacks any significance.”
“If this isn’t done the way it should, it will lead to poor results. The prosecutor might be influenced, and could reconsider his decision. This could be a devastating and catastrophic event. This cannot continue.”