Florida AG Ashley Moody urges U.S. Senate to pass ICC Act

by | Jun 28, 2024



Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody and attorneys general from 20 other states are urging the U.S. Senate to pass the Illegitimate Court Counteraction Act to prevent the International Criminal Court from prosecuting officials of nations not party to the Rome Statute, including Israel.


Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody, in conjunction with attorneys general from 20 other states, is urging the United States Senate to pass the Illegitimate Court Counteraction Act (ICC Act).

The legislation, which has already passed the U.S. House of Representatives with bipartisan support, aims to counter the International Criminal Court’s efforts to assert authority that critics argue is unlawful.

The ICC Act seeks to deter the International Criminal Court from prosecuting officials from nations that are not party to the Rome Statute, the treaty that established the court. This issue was arisen after the ICC issued arrest warrants for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, accusing them of war crimes and crimes against humanity. The letter asserts that Israel is not a party to the Rome Statute, and the coalition of attorneys general contends that the ICC’s actions are therefore outside its jurisdiction.

Moody expressed strong opposition to the ICC’s attempts to prosecute Netanyahu and Gallant, arguing that these actions threaten not only Israeli officials but also American and allied civilian and military leaders.

“The International Criminal Court proved that it has no interest in respecting the scope of its authority when it unlawfully sought an arrest warrant for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant,” she said. “Prime Minister Netanyahu and Defense Minister Gallant are merely defending their sovereign nation, Israel, from terrorists, and Israel is not party to the International Criminal Court’s Rome Statute. The court’s actions set a dangerous precedent not just for our ally Israel but also for civilian and military leaders in the United States. The Senate must pass this important legislation to ensure that Americans will not be subject to the same unlawful prosecutions.”

The letter to Senate leaders, signed by Moody and the coalition, outlines their concerns with the ICC’s actions, specifically highlighting a May 20 announcement by ICC Prosecutor Karim A.A. Khan, who indicated that arrest warrants were being sought for three Hamas leaders for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed against Israel. However, the same announcement included arrest warrants for Netanyahu and Gallant, alleging war crimes committed by Israel.

The attorneys general argue that these actions lack a proper legal basis under international law, primarily because there is no recognized “State of Palestine” and because Israel has not consented to the ICC’s jurisdiction. They assert that the ICC’s actions represent an unjustified expansion of its authority, posing a risk to officials from any nation not party to the Rome Statute.

The ICC Act proposes sanctions against any foreign individual involved in the ICC’s prosecutorial actions against U.S. or allied officials. This includes efforts to investigate, arrest, detain, or prosecute American citizens, members of the U.S. Armed Forces, government officials, and employees, as well as citizens of NATO allies or major non-NATO allies not party to the Rome Statute.

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