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The ICC to prosecute some Brits?

To date the ICC (International Criminal Court)  has mainly, with a few exceptions, prosecuted Africans.    Is that about to change?   Are some Brits heavily involved in the Iraq war in the firing line to be prosecuted?

"Fatou Bensouda, the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), has decided to open a preliminary investigation into alleged crimes committed by UK government personnel in Iraq between 2003 and 2008. The UK has categorically rejected any and all allegations that it is responsible for systematic human rights abuses in Iraq, during the country’s invasion and occupation. Still, many have been left wondering: will Western officials responsible for crimes against humanity and war crimes in Iraq finally be brought to justice? The answer is, quite frankly, unclear. But the Iraq investigation may also have another aim: to save the ICC itself.

The Prosecutor’s decision to open a preliminary investigation comes just a few short months after a formal complaint was lodged at the Court. In their submission, petitioners requested that senior British military and political officials – including General Sir Peter Wall, former Defence Secretary Geoff Hoon and former Defence Minister Adam Ingram – be investigated for their alleged responsibility for war crimes committed during the conflict in Iraq. The complaint was filed by two groups: the European Centre for Constitutional Rights (ECCHR) and Public Interest Lawyers (PIL).

The UK government has vociferously rejected any notion that the ICC should investigate British officials. The Court, itself, functions on the principle of complementarity, which means it can only investigate or prosecute crimes when states themselves are unable or unwilling to do so. The UK government maintains that enough is being done to ensure that any abuses by British troops are examined and prosecuted by its own domestic courts. Notably, there is some hope that even if the ICC does not officially investigate UK actions in Iraq, that the Court’s attention will at least force the British government to be more transparent, and boost domestic accountability measures."


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