Judges rule ICC has jurisdiction over Rohingya deportations

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In this file photo, a Rohingya refugee carries an old man in an area near no man’s land on the Bangladesh side of the border with Myanmar after crossing the Naf River. (AFP)
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In this file photo, a Bangladeshi man helps Rohingya Muslim refugees to disembark from a boat on the Bangladeshi shoreline of the Naf river after crossing the border from Myanmar in Teknaf. (AFP)
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In this file photo, a Rohingya refugee woman walks with a child in her lap in Balukhali refugee camp in the Bangladeshi district of Ukhia. (AFP)
Updated 06 September 2018
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Judges rule ICC has jurisdiction over Rohingya deportations

THE HAGUE: The International Criminal Court said Thursday it had jurisdiction to probe the forced deportation of Rohingya Muslims by Myanmar’s military as a possible crime against humanity.
Some 700,000 people from the stateless Muslim minority have fled Myanmar’s northern Rakhine state into neighboring Bangladesh since August last year to escape a bloody military crackdown.
The ICC’s “pre-trial chamber... decided by majority the court may exercise jurisdiction over the alleged deportations of the Rohingya people from Myanmar to Bangladesh,” the Hague-based tribunal said in a statement.
The Myanmar government on Thursday declined to comment on the announcement when contacted by AFP.
The move comes days after UN investigators called for an international investigation and prosecution of Myanmar’s army chief and five other top military commanders for genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes against the Rohingya.
The violence has left a trail of torched villages in its wake, amid allegations of murder and rape at the hands of troops and vigilantes.
In an unprecedented move in April, the ICC’s chief prosecutor Fatou Bensouda asked judges to rule whether she can investigate the deportations as a crime against humanity.
It is a legally complicated request, as Myanmar is not a signatory and member of the Rome Statute which underpins the ICC.
The Southeast Asian nation voiced “serious concern” over the prosecutor’s move, saying that the ICC’s charter in fact did not state that it had jurisdiction to investigate a country that had not signed up to the Rome Statute that governs the court.
Bangladesh, however, is a signatory and the judges said that because the deportations involve a cross-border crime, that gives the court jurisdiction to investigate the plight of the Rohingya.
Bensouda had likened deportation to “a cross-border shooting,” arguing the crime “is not completed until the bullet (fired in one state) strikes and kills the victim (standing in another state).”


Three people injured when car smashes into Trump Plaza lobby in New York suburb

Updated 1 min 57 sec ago

Three people injured when car smashes into Trump Plaza lobby in New York suburb

  • The luxury residential property in New Rochelle is not where US President Donald Trump and his family have a residence
  • Neither a representative for Trump’s properties nor the New Rochelle police were immediately available for comment
ATLANTA: A car plowed into the main hall of a Trump Plaza in suburban New York on Tuesday night, causing minor injuries to two bystanders and the driver, news media reported.

The luxury residential property in New Rochelle is not where US President Donald Trump and his family have a residence, but was widely reported by national media nonetheless.

A local ABC affiliate said the driver casually got out of his Mercedes-Benz C300 coupe and sat on the sofa in the building’s main hall after the crash at 9 pm in the city north of New York. The crash appeared to be an accident and the driver was being questioned by the police early Wednesday, NBC and other media reported.

There was nothing suspicious about the crash, New Rochelle police told local media. “We would like to thank the first responders for their swift attention to this evening’s incident,” a spokesperson for the Trump Organization said in an emailed statement to ABC News. “We are truly grateful to them for their service.”

Neither a representative for Trump’s properties nor the New Rochelle police were immediately available to Reuters early Wednesday for comment.