UN Chief: Palestine to Join ICC

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said Tuesday that Palestine will join the International Criminal Court on April 1, a decision that will allow Palestine to bring war-crimes charges against Israel while also affecting chances of an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal. In a statement posted on the UN’s treaty website, the secretary-general said he was “acting in his capacity as depositary” for the documents of ratification. The Palestinians submitted documents ratifying the Rome Statute that established the court on Friday, as the final step to becoming a member of the world’s permanent war-crimes tribunal. On Saturday, Israel responded to the decision by freezing more than $100 million in tax funds collected for the Palestinians. The U.S., Israel’s closest ally, also opposed the move and the Obama administration said it would review its annual $440 million aid package to the Palestinians because of the move.