Biden administration lifts sanctions against ICC staff

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Biden administration lifts sanctions against ICC staff

US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said divisions between Washington and The Hague persist

The United States on Friday lifted sanctions on Fatou Bensouda, chief prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Also, visa restrictions were lifted, imposed on a number of employees of the department in The Hague.

US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said the State Department’s decision was due to the “inappropriateness and ineffectiveness” of the sanctions imposed earlier by the administration of former President Donald Trump.

Recall that last year, the Trump administration accused the ICC of infringing on US national sovereignty after the court announced a possible investigation into the actions of the US military in Afghanistan.

The ICC called the sanctions an attack on international justice and the rule of law. The decision was also criticized by American human rights activists. Human Rights Watch’s director of international justice, Richard Dicker, called Trump’s decision a “blatant perversion” of the concept of sanctions.

According to Blinken, the United States continues to oppose the ICC’s attempts to “assert jurisdiction over citizens of states that are not parties to the court, such as the United States and Israel.”

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However, according to the secretary of state, disagreements “are best resolved through negotiations with interested parties” rather than through the imposition of sanctions.