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FILE PHOTO: The International Criminal Court building is seen in The Hague, Netherlands, January 16, 2019.

REUTERS/Piroschka van de Wouw/File Photo

Hard Numbers: ICC Sanctions, Legislative deadlock, Fading free speech, Attacks on health workers, Mexico campaign tragedy

37: At least 37 members of the House of Representatives are co-sponsoring a bill that would sanction prosecutors and staff at the International Criminal Court involved in applying for arrest warrants against senior Israeli leaders. The bill was introduced by a Republican member, but the Biden administration has expressed support. The president called the warrant applications “outrageous,” and Secretary of State Antony Blinken promised to work with Congress on the issue.

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ICC war crimes charge strengthens Netanyahu's position in Israel
ICC war crimes charge against Netanyahu strengthens him in Israel | Ian Bremmer | Quick Take

ICC war crimes charge strengthens Netanyahu's position in Israel

Ian Bremmer's Quick Take: Hi, everybody. Ian Bremmer here and a Quick Take to kick off your week.

Plenty of breaking news right now. And what I want to focus on is the International Criminal Court, the ICC, which is now seeking arrest warrants for Hamas leadership and Israel's leadership, putting both on a level with Russian President Vladimir Putin, who has been friends with both Hamas leadership and Netanyahu over the years.

So it's kind of an interesting club. But this is certainly a challenging headline. And if you're watching this around the world and you're seeing that the International Criminal Court is making these cases against Sinwar who runs Hamas and other senior deputies, and the Israeli prime minister and the minister of defense.

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People attend a protest against Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's government and to call for the release of hostages kidnapped in the deadly October 7 attack on Israel by the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, in Tel Aviv, Israel, April 27, 2024.

REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

ICC arrests and Rafah invasion threats loom

Some Israeli officials reportedly believe the International Criminal Court is preparing to issuearrest warrants for high-ranking Israeli officials and Hamas operatives. While such warrants may not ever result in a trial, they may be seen as another moral rebuke of Israel.

Neither the court nor Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office have commented, but Bibi did warn last week against ICC interference that “would set a dangerous precedent that threatens the soldiers and officials of all democracies fighting savage terrorism …”

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Schoolchildren who fled Ukraine attend a mixed class with other Ukrainian children living in Vienna, Austria.

REUTERS/Lisa Leutner

Efforts underway to return Ukrainian children from Russia

There’s no sign the Russian and Ukrainian governments are ready to talk peace, but there has reportedly been progress made in mediating agreements to return Ukrainian children, taken by Russian forces into Russian territory, to their families in Ukraine.

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Print photocopies of Benjamin Ferencz, while he served as a prosecutor during the Nuremberg trials, on a table at his home in Delray Beach, Florida on June 1, 2022.

USA Today Network via Reuters Connect

Nuremberg now: the legacy of Ben Ferencz

At 27 years old, with no trial experience to speak of, Ben Ferencz entered the courtroom at Nuremberg in November of 1945. He was tasked with holding to account a regime that had slaughtered millions and tried to annihilate his own people. Acting as chief prosecutor, Ferencz secured convictions against 22 Nazis.

Ferencz, the last-surviving prosecutor at the Nuremberg trials of Nazi war criminals, passed away last week at the age of 103. As a child, he and his family fled anti-semitism in Romania. After finishing law school at Harvard, he joined the US army, taking part in the Normandy landings and the Battle of the Bulge. He was then assigned to General Patton’s HQ as part of a special unit investigating Nazi atrocities, interviewing survivors and witnessing first-hand the horrors of the concentration camps. That experience would shape the rest of his life. He would remain a warrior, not on the battlefield but in the public arena as a professor of international law and tireless campaigner for justice for the victims of genocide.

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Xi & "friend" Putin could call for Ukraine ceasefire
Xi & "friend" Putin could call for Ukraine ceasefire | Quick Take | GZERO Media

Xi & "friend" Putin could call for Ukraine ceasefire

Ian Bremmer's Quick Take:

The big story geopolitically is Xi Jinping's trip to Moscow, a three-day state visit, by far the most geopolitically significant summit of the year since the Russian invasion, frankly, a year ago. And also a deeply problematic geopolitical summit, in the sense that it goes strongly against the interests of the United States and all of its allies. Let's keep in mind this summit comes on the back of the International Criminal Court, that is recognized by 123 countries around the world, though not by Russia, the U.S. or China, declaring that Putin is a war criminal and that he should be arrested by any member state if he travels there. Indeed, the German government's already announced, if Putin were to go to Germany, that's it, they're arresting him. Never going to happen. But nonetheless, on the back of that, and then Putin's trip to Crimea and his trip to Mariupol occupied Ukrainian territory over this weekend. Mariupol, first time, he's been in territory the Russians have taken since February 24th.

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What We're Watching: Africa desperate for vaccines, US-EU truce on airplanes, ICC probes Duterte

Africa is running out of vaccines: Africa has received fewer vaccines than any other continent, and the results are now showing. Faced with a third wave of infection, many African countries say that cases are soaring and that vaccine deliveries from the WHO-managed COVAX facility remain sluggish, in large part because of shortages from Indian drug manufacturers. South Africa, Namibia, and Uganda say that their healthcare systems are inundated with COVID cases; ICU beds are scarce, and COVID patients are dying while waiting for hospital beds. To date, just 0.6 percent of Africa's 1.3 billion people are fully vaccinated, and new variants are spreading, making containment across the continent even harder. (Cases in the South African province of Gauteng, home to the hubs of Johannesburg and Pretoria, where South Africa's more transmissible COVID strain has run rampant, have doubled over the past week, and doctors are bracing for a surge in deaths.) Meanwhile, the G7 countries agreed this week to send 1 billion COVID doses to poor countries, but experts warn that these may not arrive in Africa before most states' supplies run dry.

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