In answer to UN courts, attorney general asserts Israel can independently prosecute l

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כנס לשכת עורכי הדיןכנס לשכת עורכי הדין

MG Yifat Tomer-Yerushalmi, Gali Baharav-Miara

(Photo: Israel Bar Association)

Baharav-Miara criticized ICC Chief Prosecutor Karim Khan and sent a message to the judges who will oversee the arrest warrant hearing for Netanyahu and Gallant. Noting the independence and strength of the Israeli judicial system, Baharav-Miara said, “Equating the State of Israel’s political leadership to Hamas murderers is a moral failure.”

She stressed that the Israeli legal system has consistently demonstrated “impartiality and a pursuit of truth and justice.” Khan, she said, should have allowed Israel to investigate the cases independently. “We don’t need external aid to investigate criminal cases,” she added. “The ICC prosecutor’s move contradicts the principle of complementarity. It would have been appropriate to wait for the completion of internal procedures and give Israel a fair chance.”

Baharav-Miara added, “Hamas violates every moral, legal, and international norm” in the war, hiding in a “terrorist city dug beneath civilian houses.” She said, “Anyone who looks at reality recognizes that the challenges of fighting Hamas are unprecedented, and exploits Israel’s commitment to international rules.”

She added that “the IDF is committed to fighting in accordance with the law. The war has always been against Hamas, not against the residents of Gaza. Accusing the State of Israel of violating the Genocide Convention is outrageous and constitutes a cynical and improper use.

“South Africa’s claim is baseless and distorts the concept of genocide. Hamas is a genocidal organization that imposed war on Israel and is currently committing heinous war crimes. It is responsible for the suffering of Gazan civilians.”

Chief Military Advocate General Tomer-Yerushalmi addressed an Israeli strike in Rafah Sunday night, which the Palestinians claim caused multiple civilian fatalities, against the backdrop of the ICJ’s decision to halt fighting in the area.

“Naturally, in a war of such scope and intensity, complex incidents also occur. Some of the incidents, like last night’s incident in Rafah, are very difficult. The details of yesterday’s event are still under review, and we are committed to seeing it through to its conclusion. The IDF regrets any harm to uninvolved civilians during the war,” she said.

She added that South Africa’s claims, which filed a petition against Israel in The Hague, are baseless. “The State of Israel is at war, one which it did not choose; a war that broke out in a horrific massacre,” she said. Nonetheless, she acknowledged, “There are also incidents that occur in which the suspicion of violations of the laws of war and military orders arises.”

Tomer-Yerushalmi discussed the IDF’s investigation bodies, saying, “The inspection and investigation mechanisms in the IDF are professional and independent mechanisms. They are professionally guided by the military advocate general, and are not subject to the regular chain of command involved in combat.”


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