16 December, 2009
Following the news that Tzipi Livni, who served as Foreign Minister in the Israeli government that planned and executed Israel’s brutal bombing and massacre in Gaza, faced arrest if she entered Britain, tell the government there must be no impunity for Israeli war criminals.
Please act URGENTLY – if possible e-mail your MP today, and come to the vigil on 27 December to show the government that we will not let them forget Gaza.
Ask your MP to do the following:
1. Sign Early Day Motion 502 tabled by Jeremy Corbyn MP defending the right to bring war criminals to justice: edmi.parliament.uk/EDMi/EDMDetails.aspx?EDMID=40074&SESSION=903
2. Urgently contact the Foreign Office raising the following points:
- The government has a duty under the Fourth Geneva Convention to ‘seek out and prosecute’ alleged war criminals. Under the Geneva Conventions Act 1957, the UK has universal jurisdiction to arrest and try suspected perpetrators of “grave breaches” of the Fourth Geneva Convention 1949 (IVCG). War criminals should be pursued – Britain must not become a ‘safe haven’.
- The judicial system is meant to be independent and the government’s role is not to intervene. If a judge believes there is sufficient evidence for an arrest warrant to be granted, it is irrelevant whether this embarrasses or causes problems for the British government
- The Goldstone Report detailed war crimes and potential crimes against humanity committed by Israel in Gaza. It was shameful that the government abstained on the vote for the Report at the UN Human Rights Council and General Assembly.
- Instead of responding to pressure from the Israeli government to end the right to charge and prosecute war criminals, the government should immediately change its position – it should support international law and justice, and act itself to uphold the Fourth Geneva Convention.
- Britain cannot be a true and independent ‘partner’ for peace if its policies are one-sided, and it allows those responsible for war crimes against Palestinians to avoid justice.
- Tzipi Livni is just the latest in a list of Israelis who have come under scrutiny over allegations of war crimes. Our government should reflect on this, and change its foreign policy, including ending its arms trade with Israel.