U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo strongly hinted Monday at an upcoming U.S. pushback against the "corrupt" International Criminal Court (ICC), which has also recently announced it will launch a probe into alleged Israeli war crimes against the Palestinians.
In an interview with a podcast by the conservative American Enterprise Institute think tank, Pompeo said the action will not just be taken by the State Department - instead, a multi-agency pressure campaign appears to be on its way.
"I think that the ICC and the world will see that we are determined to prevent having Americans and our friends and allies in Israel and elsewhere hauled in by this corrupt ICC," Pompeo asserted.
He also pointed at the proceedings over alleged U.S. war crimes in Afghanistan at the ICC as a key issue the U.S. has with the court, which it is not part of as it never signed its founding Rome Statute.
The ICC investigation into the alleged offenses committed by U.S. forces in Afghanistan in 2003-2004 was given a green light in March.
At the same time, the court is also looking into the possibility of looking into the alleged war crimes committed in the West Bank and Gaza - a matter hotly contested by Israel and a number of other states as they argue that the Palestinian Authority (PA) does not live up to the standard of statehood and thus could not have referred the case into the ICC in the first place.
Things got even more complicated after PA President Mahmoud Abbas announced the Palestinian governance no longer considered itself bound by any accords with Israel and the United States - potentially, including the Oslo Accords that founded it in the first place.
The announcement prompted the ICC to ask Ramallah to clarify whether this specific agreement was no longer in force.