Biden reverses Trump, lifts sanctions on Global Legal Courtroom

Lisa D. Small

President Biden on Friday reversed Trump-era foreign policies by lifting sanctions and eradicating visa limits on officials of the Intercontinental Legal Courtroom (ICC).

In September 2020, previous Secretary of State Mike Pompeo declared sanctions enforced on ICC prosecutor Fatou Bensouda, following her investigation into likely American war crimes done in Afghanistan.


The ICC’s Head of the Jurisdiction, Complementary and Cooperation Division, Phakiso Mochochoko, was also positioned less than U.S. sanctions for helping Bensouda in her investigation.

The ICC – an worldwide court that investigates and tries genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes — granted Bensouda the authority to examine alleged crimes fully commited in Afghanistan by the Taliban, Afghani forces, and U.S. forces in March 2020.

While the Biden administration lifted sanctions against the court docket officers, Secretary of Condition Anthony Blinken bolstered the U.S.’s place, rejecting the ICC’s allegations. 

“These decisions mirror our assessment that the measures adopted had been inappropriate and ineffective,” Blinken mentioned in a Friday assertion. But he added, “We carry on to disagree strongly with the ICC’s actions relating to the Afghanistan and Palestinian scenarios.”

The secretary of condition mentioned it is the Biden administration’s perception that engaging with the ICC is a far better way to tackle their grievances concerning the investigation, somewhat than by sanctioning.

The administration’s policy reversal will likely make sure you European allies that Biden has vowed to fortify ties with.

But Blinken’s remarks manage the U.S.’s historical skepticism towards the intercontinental courtroom, whose jurisdiction the U.S. does not settle for.


Just past thirty day period the U.S. condemned the ICC’s decision to investigate Israeli actions against Palestine. Israel does not settle for ICC jurisdiction either.

“We retain our longstanding objection to the Court’s initiatives to assert jurisdiction above personnel of non-States Parties these kinds of as the United States and Israel,” Blinken said.

The Biden administration’s stance in direction of the ICC, although a reversal from the Trump administration, has been satisfied with condemnation by far-left Democrats, like Rep. Rashida Tlaib, D-Mich., who said the U.S. must not interfere with the court’s ability to “independently and impartially examine” human rights abuses.

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Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., applauded the sanction removing Friday, declaring “The workers of the Worldwide Prison Court docket are community servants who devote their daily life to implementing the most heinous crimes possible.”

“If we are to are living up to our values of respect for human rights and democratic norms, United States must be main the pursuit of intercontinental justice, not blocking it,” she reported in a assertion.



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