International

ICC prosecutor targets Taliban, IS-K in probe

A file photo of Karim Ahmed Khan, International Criminal Court chief prosecutor.   | Photo Credit: AP

The International Criminal Court’s new prosecutor sought on Monday to relaunch an investigation into Afghanistan, focusing on the Taliban and the Islamic State-Khorasan group while alleged U.S. crimes will take a back seat.

Karim Khan, who took over in June, said the situation in Afghanistan following the Taliban’s takeover last month meant war crimes were no longer likely to be investigated properly.

A lawyer for alleged victims of U.S. torture in Afghanistan said she was “stunned” after Mr. Khan announced he would “deprioritise” the investigation into American forces, a probe that has long enraged Washington.

The ICC’s inquiry had been put on hold in 2020 after the now-deposed government in Kabul said it would try to investigate war crimes allegations itself.

Mr. Khan said that the “current de facto control of Afghanistan by the Taliban, and its implications (including for law enforcement and judicial activity) represents a fundamental change in circumstances necessitating the present application.”The International Criminal Court’s new prosecutor sought on Monday to relaunch an investigation into Afghanistan, focusing on the Taliban and the Islamic State-Khorasan group while alleged U.S. crimes will take a back seat.

Karim Khan, who took over in June, said the situation in Afghanistan following the Taliban’s takeover last month meant war crimes were no longer likely to be investigated properly.

A lawyer for alleged victims of U.S. torture in Afghanistan said she was “stunned” after Mr. Khan announced he would “deprioritise” the investigation into American forces, a probe that has long enraged Washington.

The ICC’s inquiry had been put on hold in 2020 after the now-deposed government in Kabul said it would try to investigate war crimes allegations itself.

Mr. Khan said that the “current de facto control of Afghanistan by the Taliban, and its implications (including for law enforcement and judicial activity) represents a fundamental change in circumstances necessitating the present application.”


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Printable version | Oct 20, 2021 8:09:32 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/prosecutor-seeks-to-resume-icc-probe-in-afghanistan/article36694736.ece

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