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ICC to focus probe into crimes committed by Taliban, IS-K in Afghanistan

September 28, 2021 12:38 PM

The Hague (Netherlands), The International Criminal Court (ICC) chief prosecutor Karim Khan said on Monday that he wants to focus his investigations in Afghanistan on the crimes allegedly committed by the Taliban and the Islamic State–Khorasan Province.

In a statement, Khan said he has asked the court to let him resume the inquiry into alleged war crimes in Afghanistan.

“The gravity, scale and continuing nature of alleged crimes by the Taliban and the Islamic State, which include allegations of indiscriminate attacks on civilians, targeted extrajudicial executions, persecution of women and girls, crimes against children and other crimes affecting the civilian population at large, demand focus and proper resources from my Office, if we are to construct credible cases capable of being proved beyond reasonable doubt in the courtroom,” he said.

He said the decision to prioritise the crimes by IS-K and the Taliban was also reflective of the UN Security Council’s condemnation of "the deplorable attacks of August 26, 2021, near Hamid Karzai International Airport in Kabul, Afghanistan, which were claimed by the Islamic State in Khorasan Province", and noted that the Council has, in multiple resolutions, deemed that the terrorist activities of the Islamic State constitute a global threat to international peace and security.

“I remain committed to deploying the appropriate and available resources at my disposal to ensure independent and impartial investigations. Victims and survivors in Afghanistan deserve no less.”

He also said that due to “limited resources available” to his office he would “deprioritise other aspects of this investigation”, in reference to the allegations of crimes committed by the US forces.

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