by Ramzy Baroud
It was the moment many had been waiting for. On Jan. 2, Palestine’s United Nations envoy, Riyad Mansour formally requested membership at the International Criminal Court (ICC).
“We are seeking justice for all the victims that have been killed by Israel, the occupying power,” he said.
There was no explanation why Palestine’s membership of the Rome Statue (through which the ICC is governed) was delayed in the first place; of why no justice was ever sought for thousands of victims in Gaza, and many in the West Bank and Jerusalem, although such membership would have been granted much earlier.
In fact, in 2012, Palestine’s status at the UN was upgraded, from an observer entity to an “observer state”. The move was largely symbolic, since it was an attempt at breathing life in the two-state-solution, which was long dead. But it had one single practical benefit – the coveted membership at the ICC. Finally, Israel could be held accountable for its war crimes; finally, a measure of justice was possible.