Trump Admin. Imposes Sanctions On International Criminal Court Prosecutor

Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead / Public Domain


The prosecutor is investigating allegations of U.S. war crimes in Afghanistan.

The Trump administration has imposed sanctions on the International Criminal Court’s (ICC) chief prosecutor “investigating allegations that U.S. troops committed war crimes in Afghanistan,” NPR reported.

  • The sanctions were announced by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Wednesday, and “Human rights groups swiftly decried the sanctions as an attack on international justice.”
  • Pompeo called the ICC, of which the United States has never been a part, "a thoroughly broken and corrupt institution,” adding: "We will not tolerate its illegitimate attempts to subject Americans to its jurisdiction."

The sanctions are directed at Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda and the court's head of jurisdiction Phakiso Mochochoko who were both added on Wednesday to the Treasury Department's "Specially Designated Nationals" list. The designation freezes any assets they might have in the U.S. or subject to U.S. law.

  • NPR noted that the sanctions add to “an executive order issued by President Trump against court officials in June,” after the ICC in March “moved forward with its investigation into possible war crimes and crimes against humanity in Afghanistan, including those allegedly committed by U.S. forces and the CIA.”

"The Trump administration's perverse use of sanctions, devised for alleged terrorists and drug kingpins, against prosecutors seeking justice for grave international crimes, magnifies the failure of the US to prosecute torture," Richard Dicker, international justice director at Human Right Watch, said in a statement.

Read the full report.


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