Small Wars Journal

U.S. Swipes at International Criminal Court Over Afghanistan Investigations

U.S. Swipes at International Criminal Court Over Afghanistan Investigations by Courtney McBride – Wall Street Journal

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said the U.S. is imposing visa restrictions against International Criminal Court officials, citing investigations by the ICC into the activities of Americans and their allies in Afghanistan.


Mr. Pompeo said the visa restrictions had begun, and he declined to provide details on the number or identities of the individuals affected. He warned that the U.S. is prepared to take additional steps, including economic sanctions, in an effort to head off what he called improper investigations.


The announcement comes in response to moves by the ICC, kicked off in late 2017, to solicit information on alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in Afghanistan since May 2003. The ICC said it has received about 700 submissions from alleged victims, and it is working to determine whether to authorize an investigation.


The ICC, which began in The Hague in 2002, is intended as a court of last resort for genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity, when national justice systems can’t or won’t take action. American elected officials from both parties have long been wary of the court because of the potential to prosecute American officials for military operations.


John Bolton, national security adviser to President Trump,  has long opposed the ICC, and before assuming his post urged Mr. Trump to “strangle the ICC in its cradle.”…

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