MP 'disappointed' with Prime Minister's response

Date published: 12 February 2009

Rochdale MP Paul Rowen spoke of his disappointment after the Prime Minister overlooked his call for a Gaza investigation.

The MP spoke in the House of Commons yesterday (Wednesday 11 February) about his desire for the International Criminal Court (ICC) to investigate accusations of war crimes against Israel.

Paul, speaking at Prime Minister’s Questions, said: “Can the Prime Minister tell the House what steps the Government are taking due to allegations of war crimes in Gaza. Has the Government asked the Security Council to refer the matter to the International Criminal Court?

The Prime Minister Gordon Brown replied: “First of all the Secretary General is looking into what has happened particularly in relation to the United Nations headquarters and the Israeli Government announced an inquiry. There are two inquiries that we must wait on.”

Speaking after Prime Ministers Questions Rochdale MP said he was disappointed by the Prime Ministers reply.

He said: "The plain fact is that people are looking for our government to take a lead on this issue. Whilst inquiries by the UN Secretary General Ban Ki -moon and Israel are to be welcomed none have the force of law.

“Israel has not signed up to the Rome Convention which means no criminal action can be taken if war crimes are proven.

“We need as soon as the Secretary General has completed his report to be pressing the Security Council to refer the issues of War Crimes to the International Criminal Court. Those who lost their lives in this tragedy deserve nothing less."

Paul Rowen added that he will continue to press for a full investigation by the ICC with those responsible indicted for war crimes.

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