International Criminal Court urges Libyan factions to respect humanitarian law

Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court Fatou Bensouda called Tuesday upon warring Libyan factions to fully respect the International Humanitarian Law, urging all parties to avoid crimes within the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court.

“I remind all parties that any person who incites or engages in such crimes including by ordering, requesting, encouraging or contributing in any other manner to the commission of crimes within the jurisdiction of the Court is liable to prosecution,” Bensouda said in a statement.

She added that the heads of the warring Libyan factions may be held be held accountable for crimes committed under their command.

“The law is clear: where commanders knew or should have known that crimes are being committed, and they failed and/or neglected to take all necessary and reasonable measures to prevent or repress their commission, they may be held individually criminally accountable.”

Bensouda stressed that necessary measures should be taken to protect the western region’s residents as well as infrastructure, including schools, hospitals and detention centers, expressing concern over the deteriorating situation in Libya.

“I will not hesitate to expand my investigations and potential prosecutions to cover any new instances of crimes falling within the Court’s jurisdiction, with full respect for the principle of complementarity. No one should doubt my determination in this regard,” Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court concluded.

Since April 4, the Libyan National Army (LNA) has been trying to control and uproot terrorist groups from Libya’s capital, falling into war with the head of Tripoli-based Government of the National Accord (GNA) Faiez al-Sarraj.

The clashes and shelling between the two rival parties have killed and injured many civilians and displaced many others.

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