Will there be justice for the victims on the Mavi Marmara?

2015-07-19 06:43

Justice for victims on Freedom Flotilla as ICC rules prosecutor to re open investigation on the Israeli attack on the Mavi Marmara? Barring political interference and incredible lobbying that led to the investigation getting scuttled,let's see if that happens. I am very hopeful that it will!

In a 2-1 decision,and as a result of the persistent pursuit of justice, judges of the International Criminal Court (ICC) ruled that Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda had committed “material errors” in her “Decision Not to Investigate” war crimes complaints concerning the murderous Israeli 2010 raid on the Mavi Marmara,that led to the killing of 9 humanitarian aid workers in May 2010.

She has been ordered her to reconsider her decision as soon as possible.

If readers of  my blog  would recall that previously in concluding her preliminary examination in November last year ,Bensouda stated there was a basis to believe “war crimes under the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court were committed” but that they would not be of “sufficient gravity” to justify further action by the ICC.

The Union of the Comoros requested the ICC to review the Prosecutor’s decision not to initiate an investigation.

The ICC judges’ ruling stated, inter alia,that

" 2. […] The Prosecutor determined that there was reasonable basis to believe that the war crimes of wilful killing under article 8(2)(a)(i), wilfully causing serious injury to body and health under article 8(2)(a)(iii), committing outrages upon personal dignity under article 8(2)(b)(xxi), and, if the blockade of Gaza by Israel is to be deemed unlawful, also intentionally directing an attack against civilian objects under article 8(2)(b)(ii) of the Rome Statute (the “Statute”) have been committed in the context of the referred situation."

The ruling went on to say that

"18. By articulating in the Decision Not to Investigate a principle without basis in the law, the Prosecutor committed an error. However, the Chamber observes that the Prosecutor did not in fact apply the principle she announced, and did take into account certain facts “outside of the Court’s jurisdiction” for the purposes of her analysis under article 53(1) of the Statute, such as for her conclusion that crimes were committed only on the Mavi Marmara and that no serious injuries occurred on the other vessels in the flotilla (para. 138), or for her conclusion that the identified crimes had no significant impact on the population in Gaza (para. 141)."

Finally, though not ultimately it concluded that

"19. Therefore, the Chamber is of the view that the articulation of the erroneous abstract principle did not, as such, affect the validity of the Prosecutor’s assessment of gravity. The various factors considered by the Prosecutor in the context of her assessment of gravity need to be examined individually."

Is there ever going to be justice for the victims in this case? Not if the politicians trying to block this investigation have their way.

I believe that there will if the ICC is to be seen as relevant as an instrument in the pursuit of justice.

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