Middle East

China calls for 'objective' stance by ICC on warrants against Israeli, Hamas leaders

Beijing avoids direct comment but says it supports 'all efforts' to promote a 'lasting solution to Palestinian question'

Riyaz ul Khaliq  | 21.05.2024 - Update : 21.05.2024
China calls for 'objective' stance by ICC on warrants against Israeli, Hamas leaders


Avoiding a direct comment, China on Tuesday called on the International Criminal Court (ICC) to uphold an “objective” stance after it issued warrants against Israeli and Hamas leaders, state media reported.

“We support all efforts of the international community to promote a comprehensive, fair, and lasting solution to the Palestinian question,” Wang Wenbin, spokesman for China’s Foreign Ministry, told reporters in Beijing.

“It is hoped that the International Criminal Court will uphold an objective and fair stance and exercise its powers in accordance with the law,” Wang replied when asked for a comment on ICC warrants against Israel and Hamas leaders.

The ICC requested Monday arrest warrants for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, Hamas Political Bureau Chief Ismail Haniyeh, Gaza Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar, and Izz al-Din al-Qassam Brigades head Mohammed Deif.

Israel has continued its brutal offensive on the Gaza Strip despite a UN Security Council resolution demanding an immediate cease-fire in the enclave.

More than 35,500 Palestinians have since been killed, the vast majority of whom have been women and children, and over 79,600 others injured since last October following a cross-border attack by the Palestinian group Hamas.

More than seven months into the Israeli war, vast swathes of Gaza lay in ruins amid a crippling blockade of food, clean water, and medicine.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which has ordered it to ensure that its forces do not commit acts of genocide and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

Addressing the ICJ early this year in February, China said the Palestinians’ use of armed struggle to gain independence from foreign and colonial rule was “legitimate” and “well-founded” in international law.

“In pursuit of the right to self-determination, Palestinian people’s use of force to resist foreign oppression and complete the establishment of an independent state is (an) inalienable right well founded in international law,” the Chinese representative Ma Xinmin told the top court in The Hague.

"The struggle waged by peoples for their liberation, right to self-determination, including armed struggle against colonialism, occupation, aggression, domination against foreign forces should not be considered terror acts," he added, citing international conventions.

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