Metropolitan police seeks eyewitness testimony over ‘Israeli war crimes’

UK border security Editorial credit: 1000 Words /

The Metropolitan Police is asking eyewitnesses travelling through airports to report allegations of war crimes and crimes against humanity, in support of an International Criminal Court (ICC) investigation into Israel.

Posters produced by the Met’s counter-terror unit have been spotted at Heathrow and other airports, asking anyone who travelled to either Israel or Palestine and witnessed “terrorism, war crimes or crimes against humanity” to report them to the UK police.

The posters are written in Arabic, Hebrew and English.

The total number of Palestinians killed in Gaza since October 7 now stands at 22,185, while at least 57,000 have been injured, the Ministry of Health said on Tuesday.

Israel has also inflicted widespread damage on civilian infrastructure through widespread carpet bombing.

A Met spokesman said the force must support the ICC investigation and has been doing so since 2019.

He said: “As the UK’s investigative authority for war crimes, counter-terrorism policing – through the Met’s war crimes team – has a responsibility to support ICC investigations. The ICC opened an investigation in 2019 into alleged war crimes in Israel and Palestine.

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“Under the terms of the 1998 Rome Statute, our war crimes team is obliged to support any investigations opened by the ICC that could involve British subjects” and said the posters were put up to meet that obligation.”

Recently, ICC prosecutor Karim A Khan warned Israel that it must follow the international rules of war.

He said: “I have to say that Israel has clear obligations in relation to its war with Hamas: not just moral obligations, but legal obligations that it has to comply with the laws of armed conflict. It’s there in the Rome Statute. It’s there in black and white. It’s there in the Geneva Conventions. It’s there in black and white…

“They need to demonstrate the proper application of the principles of distinction, precaution and of proportionality. And I want to be quite clear so there’s no misunderstanding: In relation to every dwelling house, in relation to any school, any hospital, any church, any mosque – those places are protected, unless the protective status has been lost. And I want to be equally clear that the burden of proving that the protective status is lost rests with those who fire the gun, the missile, or the rocket in question.”

Meanwhile, right-wing politicians and Zionist groups have blasted the Met for their stance.

Former PM Boris Johnson told The Telegraph: “This sounds like a worrying politicisation of the Met Police – especially after Met officers were seen tearing down posters of Israeli hostages in Gaza.

“When I was Mayor of London I made it clear that we would not import foreign wars or disputes onto the streets of London.”

He suggested the Met “would be better off fighting knife crime in the capital”, than investigating war crimes halfway across the world.

And Gideon Falter, the Chief Executive of the Campaign Against Anti-Semitism said the Met’s latest campaign is “utterly surreal.”

He said: “At a time when protesters are marching in London every week wearing Hamas-style headbands, shouting genocidal chants, calling for jihad against the Jewish state and inciting violent intifada with apparent impunity, the Met is concerned with acts of terrorism and allegations of war crimes halfway around the world, potentially even in contravention of the stated position of the British Government.”

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