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ICC to open probe into Libya violence

The International Criminal Court (ICC) [official website] said Wednesday that it will launch an investigation into the recent violence in Libya. According to a statement [press release], ICC Chief Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo [official profile] will make a formal announcement of the investigation Thursday. The Rome Statute [text] enables the ICC to proceed with an investigation unless the crimes committed do not fall under the court's jurisdiction. UN Security Council [official website] Resolution 1970 [text] gives the ICC jurisdiction over the current situation in Libya. During a press conference Thursday at The Hague, Ocampo will present information regarding individuals in Libya who can be prosecuted. The ICC's statement says:

The Office of the Prosecutor is liaising with the United Nations, the African Union, the Arab League, as well as States. Additionally, the Prosecutor will also request information from other sources including from Interpol who will provide assistance. The Prosecutor will act independently and impartially. The next step is for the Prosecutor to present his case to ICC judges who will then decide whether or not to issue arrest warrants based on the evidence.
Depending on the ICC's findings during investigation, warrants maybe issued against individuals involved with the violence Libya.

On Saturday, the UN Security Council voted unanimously [press release] to impose sanctions [JURIST report] on Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi [BBC profile], marking the first unanimous referral to the ICC in UN history. Resolution 1970 also received support from Libya's delegation itself, which renounced Gaddafi on Friday [Reuters report]. Subsequently, the UN General Assembly voted Tuesday to suspend Libya [JURIST report] from the Human Rights Council (UNHRC) [official website] in response to the violent suppression of peaceful protesters by forces loyal to Gaddafi. According to a statement issued by the court Monday, the ICC will not grant immunity [JURIST report] to any person perpetrating crimes against humanity in Libya.

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