Afghanistan Analysts Network – English

AAN in the Media

Analysis: Can the ICC deliver justice in Afghanistan?

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al-Jazeera, 4 November 2021

In this article looking at further developments around a planned International Criminal Court’s (ICC) investigation into alleged war crimes in Afghanistan, after the ICC dropped the US and former government forces from the list of those to be investigated, AAN’s Ehsan Qaane is quoted as having expressed frustration about this decision:

“It’s very clear that a domestic investigation is not going to happen in Afghanistan and that the request the Afghan government made to the office of the prosecutor is no longer valid,” Qaane said.

“I don’t think this is a matter of complementarity,” he said, adding that whoever the UN names as a legitimate representative cannot be expected to have the capacity to conduct a credible investigation.

While the Taliban could take advantage of the delay in resuming an investigation to destroy some of the evidence, Qaane said the fall of Kabul to the Taliban could paradoxically “make the investigation easier”.

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“All together, I think this is very bad for the reputation of the court,” Qaane said. Accusations of bias and pro-West sentiment had already been circulating and the prosecutor’s decision is likely to reinforce this view, according to the AAN analyst.