ICC Prosecutor Calls For Afghanistan War Crimes Investigation

11/28/2017

The prosecutor of the International Criminal Court is calling for an investigation into possible war crimes and crimes against humanity in Afghanistan.

The scope of such an investigation isn't clear, but it could have the potential to involve U.S. troops. Fatou Bensouda said in a statement that she has decided to request authorization to open a formal investigation. ICC judges would then decide whether the situation meets the court's criteria.

Pentagon spokesman Eric Pahon told NPR: "Our view is clear: An ICC investigation with respect to U.S. personnel would be wholly unwarranted and unjustified. More broadly, our overall assessment is that commencement of an ICC investigation will not serve the interests of either peace or justice in Afghanistan."

Bensouda said the court's jurisdiction for crimes committed in Afghanistan extends to May 1, 2003.

Friday's statement doesn't name specific parties or incidents that would potentially be investigated. But a report released by the prosecutor's office last year says there is a "reasonable basis" to believe the following crimes have occurred.

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