US bars entry to International Criminal Court investigators - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

US bars entry to International Criminal Court investigators

Posted: Updated:
  • NationalMore>>

  • Huffman's court date pushed back in admissions scam case

    Huffman's court date pushed back in admissions scam case

    Wednesday, March 20 2019 2:11 PM EDT2019-03-20 18:11:14 GMT
    Wednesday, March 20 2019 2:12 PM EDT2019-03-20 18:12:39 GMT
    (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File). FILE - This Sept. 17, 2017 file photo shows actress Felicity Huffman at the 69th Primetime Emmy Awards in Los Angeles. Huffman and Lori Loughlin have worked steadily as respected actresses and remained recog...(Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File). FILE - This Sept. 17, 2017 file photo shows actress Felicity Huffman at the 69th Primetime Emmy Awards in Los Angeles. Huffman and Lori Loughlin have worked steadily as respected actresses and remained recog...
    (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File). FILE - This Sept. 17, 2017 file photo shows actress Felicity Huffman at the 69th Primetime Emmy Awards in Los Angeles. Huffman and Lori Loughlin have worked steadily as respected actresses and remained recog...(Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File). FILE - This Sept. 17, 2017 file photo shows actress Felicity Huffman at the 69th Primetime Emmy Awards in Los Angeles. Huffman and Lori Loughlin have worked steadily as respected actresses and remained recog...
    A judge has granted a request to push back actress Felicity Huffman's court appearance in Boston on charges that she participated in a college admissions cheating scam.More
    A judge has granted a request to push back actress Felicity Huffman's court appearance in Boston on charges that she participated in a college admissions cheating scam.More
  • Arizona woman used pepper spray on adopted kids, police say

    Arizona woman used pepper spray on adopted kids, police say

    Wednesday, March 20 2019 11:01 AM EDT2019-03-20 15:01:13 GMT
    Wednesday, March 20 2019 2:12 PM EDT2019-03-20 18:12:38 GMT
    (Pinal County Sheriff’s Office via AP). This booking photo provided by Pinal County Sheriff’s Office shows Machelle Hackney. Authorities say, Tuesday, March 19, 2019,  Hackney is accused of abusing seven adopted children, including using pepper spray o...(Pinal County Sheriff’s Office via AP). This booking photo provided by Pinal County Sheriff’s Office shows Machelle Hackney. Authorities say, Tuesday, March 19, 2019, Hackney is accused of abusing seven adopted children, including using pepper spray o...
    (Pinal County Sheriff’s Office via AP). This booking photo provided by Pinal County Sheriff’s Office shows Machelle Hackney. Authorities say, Tuesday, March 19, 2019,  Hackney is accused of abusing seven adopted children, including using pepper spray o...(Pinal County Sheriff’s Office via AP). This booking photo provided by Pinal County Sheriff’s Office shows Machelle Hackney. Authorities say, Tuesday, March 19, 2019, Hackney is accused of abusing seven adopted children, including using pepper spray o...
    Arizona authorities say a woman has been arrested on allegations of using pepper spray to discipline her seven adopted children and locking them inside a closet for days.More
    Arizona authorities say a woman has been arrested on allegations of using pepper spray to discipline her seven adopted children and locking them inside a closet for days.More
  • Poll: Support rises in all age groups for legal pot

    Poll: Support rises in all age groups for legal pot

    Tuesday, March 19 2019 6:31 PM EDT2019-03-19 22:31:17 GMT
    Wednesday, March 20 2019 2:12 PM EDT2019-03-20 18:12:37 GMT
    Poll finds growing majority of Americans say marijuana should be legal, support climbs among all age groups.More
    Poll finds growing majority of Americans say marijuana should be legal, support climbs among all age groups.More

By MATTHEW LEE
AP Diplomatic Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) - The United States will revoke or deny visas to International Criminal Court personnel seeking to investigate alleged war crimes and other abuses committed by U.S. forces in Afghanistan or elsewhere, and may do the same with those who seek action against Israel, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Friday.

Pompeo, acting on a threat delivered in September by U.S. national security adviser John Bolton, framed the action as necessary to prevent the international body from infringing on U.S. sovereignty by prosecuting American forces or allies for torture or other war crimes.

"We are determined to protect the American and allied military and civilian personnel from living in fear of unjust prosecution for actions taken to defend our great nation," Pompeo said.

U.S. officials have long regarded the Netherlands-based ICC with hostility, arguing that American courts are capable of handling any allegations against U.S. forces and questioning the motives of an international court.

The ICC and its supporters, including human rights groups that denounced Pompeo's announcement, argue that it is needed to prosecute cases when a country fails to do so or does an insufficient job of it.

The visa restrictions would apply to any ICC employee who takes or has taken action "to request or further such an investigation" into allegations against U.S. forces and their allies in Afghanistan that include forced disappearances and torture.

Pompeo said the restrictions "may also be used to deter ICC efforts to pursue allied personnel, including Israelis, without the allies' consent," he said.

The Hague-based court, the first global tribunal for war crimes, said it would continue to operate "undeterred" by the U.S. action.

The ICC prosecutor has a pending request to look into possible war crimes in Afghanistan that may involve Americans. The Palestinians have also asked the court to bring cases against Israel.

Speaking directly to ICC employees, Pompeo said: "If you are responsible for the proposed ICC investigation of U.S. personnel in connection with the situation in Afghanistan, you should not assume that you still have or will get a visa or will be permitted to enter the United States."

That comment suggested that action may have already been taken against the ICC prosecutor who asked last year to formally open an investigation into allegations of war crimes committed by Afghan national security forces, Taliban and Haqqani network militants, as well as U.S. forces and intelligence officials in Afghanistan since May 2003.

The prosecution's request says there is information that members of the U.S. military and intelligence agencies "committed acts of torture, cruel treatment, outrages upon personal dignity, rape and sexual violence against conflict-related detainees in Afghanistan and other locations, principally in the 2003-2004 period."

The United States has never been a member of the ICC. The Clinton administration in 2000 signed the Rome Statute that created the ICC but had reservations about the scope of the court's jurisdiction and never submitted it for ratification to the Senate, where there was broad bipartisan opposition to what lawmakers saw as a threat to U.S. sovereignty.

When President George W. Bush took office in 2001, his administration promoted and passed the American Service Members Protection Act, which sought to immunize U.S. troops from potential prosecution by the ICC. In 2002, Bolton, then a State Department official, traveled to New York to ceremonially "unsign" the Rome Statute at the United Nations.

This past September, Bolton said the ICC was a direct threat to U.S. national security interests and he threatened its personnel with both visa revocations and financial sanctions should it try to move against Americans. Pompeo said Friday that more measures may come.

The ICC said in a statement it was established by a treaty supported by 123 countries and that it prosecutes cases only when those countries failed to do so or did not do so "genuinely." Afghanistan is a signatory.

"The court is an independent and impartial judicial institution crucial for ensuring accountability for the gravest crimes under international law," the statement said. "The ICC, as a court of law, will continue to do its independent work, undeterred, in accordance with its mandate and the overarching principle of the rule of law."

Supporters of the court slammed Pompeo's announcement.

Human Rights Watch called it "a thuggish attempt to penalize investigators" at the ICC.

"The Trump administration is trying an end run around accountability," it said. "Taking action against those who work for the ICC sends a clear message to torturers and murderers alike: Their crimes may continue unchecked."

Amnesty International described the move as "the latest attack on international justice and international institutions by an administration hellbent on rolling back human rights protections."

The American Civil Liberties Union, which represents three people before the ICC who say they were tortured in Afghanistan, called the decision "misguided and dangerous" and "an unprecedented attempt to skirt international accountability for well-documented war crimes that haunt our clients to this day."

"It reeks of the very totalitarian practices that are characteristic of the worst human rights abusers, and is a blatant effort to intimidate and retaliate against judges, prosecutors, and advocates seeking justice for victims of serious human rights abuses," it said.

___

Associated Press writer Mike Corder in Brussels contributed to this report.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

  • InternationalMore>>

  • 'There is death all over': Cyclone Idai toll rises above 300

    'There is death all over': Cyclone Idai toll rises above 300

    Wednesday, March 20 2019 4:51 AM EDT2019-03-20 08:51:06 GMT
    Wednesday, March 20 2019 2:12 PM EDT2019-03-20 18:12:17 GMT
    (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi). Soldiers and paramedics carry injured survivors from a helicopter in Chimanimani about 600 kilometres south east of Harare, Zimbabwe, Tuesday March, 19, 2019.  According to the government, Cyclone Idai has killed more t...(AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi). Soldiers and paramedics carry injured survivors from a helicopter in Chimanimani about 600 kilometres south east of Harare, Zimbabwe, Tuesday March, 19, 2019. According to the government, Cyclone Idai has killed more t...
    (AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi). Soldiers and paramedics carry injured survivors from a helicopter in Chimanimani about 600 kilometres south east of Harare, Zimbabwe, Tuesday March, 19, 2019.  According to the government, Cyclone Idai has killed more t...(AP Photo/Tsvangirayi Mukwazhi). Soldiers and paramedics carry injured survivors from a helicopter in Chimanimani about 600 kilometres south east of Harare, Zimbabwe, Tuesday March, 19, 2019. According to the government, Cyclone Idai has killed more t...
    Zimbabwe is retrieving and burying bodies Wednesday as Mozambique begins three days of national mourning for victims of Cyclone Idai.More
    Zimbabwe is retrieving and burying bodies Wednesday as Mozambique begins three days of national mourning for victims of Cyclone Idai.More
  • Turkey's Erdogan sparks spat with Australia, New Zealand

    Turkey's Erdogan sparks spat with Australia, New Zealand

    Wednesday, March 20 2019 8:11 AM EDT2019-03-20 12:11:06 GMT
    Wednesday, March 20 2019 2:12 PM EDT2019-03-20 18:12:05 GMT
    (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel). Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses the supporters of his ruling Justice and Development Party, AKP, at a rally in Istanbul, late Tuesday, March 19, 2019, ahead of local elections scheduled for March 31, 2019.(AP Photo/Emrah Gurel). Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses the supporters of his ruling Justice and Development Party, AKP, at a rally in Istanbul, late Tuesday, March 19, 2019, ahead of local elections scheduled for March 31, 2019.
    (AP Photo/Emrah Gurel). Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses the supporters of his ruling Justice and Development Party, AKP, at a rally in Istanbul, late Tuesday, March 19, 2019, ahead of local elections scheduled for March 31, 2019.(AP Photo/Emrah Gurel). Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan addresses the supporters of his ruling Justice and Development Party, AKP, at a rally in Istanbul, late Tuesday, March 19, 2019, ahead of local elections scheduled for March 31, 2019.
    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has sparked a diplomatic spat with New Zealand and Australia as he campaigns for votes in local elections this month and portrays the mosque shooting in New Zealand and a...More
    Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has sparked a diplomatic spat with New Zealand and Australia as he campaigns for votes in local elections this month and portrays the mosque shooting in New Zealand and a World War I battle as targeting Islam.More
  • The Latest: Theresa May expected to make televised address

    The Latest: Theresa May expected to make televised address

    Wednesday, March 20 2019 5:01 AM EDT2019-03-20 09:01:04 GMT
    Wednesday, March 20 2019 2:12 PM EDT2019-03-20 18:12:02 GMT
    (AP Photo/Matt Dunham). An anti-Brexit supporter stands by European and British Union flags placed opposite the Houses of Parliament in London, Monday, March 18, 2019. British Prime Minister Theresa May was making a last-minute push Monday to win suppo...(AP Photo/Matt Dunham). An anti-Brexit supporter stands by European and British Union flags placed opposite the Houses of Parliament in London, Monday, March 18, 2019. British Prime Minister Theresa May was making a last-minute push Monday to win suppo...
    (AP Photo/Matt Dunham). An anti-Brexit supporter stands by European and British Union flags placed opposite the Houses of Parliament in London, Monday, March 18, 2019. British Prime Minister Theresa May was making a last-minute push Monday to win suppo...(AP Photo/Matt Dunham). An anti-Brexit supporter stands by European and British Union flags placed opposite the Houses of Parliament in London, Monday, March 18, 2019. British Prime Minister Theresa May was making a last-minute push Monday to win suppo...
    British Prime Minister Theresa May is preparing to ask the European Union for a short delay to the country's divorce from the European Union.More
    British Prime Minister Theresa May is preparing to ask the European Union for a short delay to the country's divorce from the European Union.More
Powered by Frankly

All content © Copyright 2000 - 2019 WBOC. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices