State Department announces closure of PLO mission in Washington

The Bolton speech today isolates the United States from global criminal justice and severely undermines our leadership in bringing perpetrators of atrocity crimes to justice elsewhere in the world....

John Bolton is expected to outline the new policy in a speech that will also threaten ICC judges with sanction if they target Israel or the usa for its policies toward the Palestinians.

Last November, the ICC prosecutor requested authorization to investigate war crimes and detainee abuse allegations against USA servicemembers and intelligence professionals in Afghanistan.

America's long-running reluctant relationship with the International Criminal Court came to a crashing halt on Monday as decades of USA suspicions about the tribunal and its global jurisdiction spilled into open hostility, amid threats of sanctions if it investigates US troops in Afghanistan.

Palestinian foreign minister Riyad al-Malki visited the ICC in May and called on it to open an immediate investigation.

But Bolton said the main objection of the administration of President Donald Trump is to the idea that the ICC could have higher authority than the US Constitution and US sovereignty. We certainly will not join the ICC.

Erekat said in a statement on Monday that the PLO will take necessary measures to "protect the rights of our citizens living in the United States to access their consular services".

In a speech at the conservative Federalist Society in Washington, Bolton will warn the the court not to probe the United States' wartime conduct in Afghanistan.

The Obama administration expanded that cooperation, offering additional support to the ICC as it investigated the then-Uganda-based Lord's Resistance Army and its top leadership, including Kony.

The United States has chose to close the Palestinian mission in Washington in the latest move against them by President Donald Trump, a Palestinian official said on Monday, denouncing it as a "dangerous escalation".

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In recent weeks, the United States cut more than $200 million in bilateral aid to the Palestinians and canceled its support for the UN agency for Palestinian refugees.

The ICC, which is based in the Hague, has a mandate to prosecute war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide.

The Palestinian Authority says it will not abandon its principles following the US decision to close the Palestinian Liberation Organization's office in Washington.

The US signed the Rome Treaty that established the International Criminal Court in 2002 but never ratified it.

The Washington D.C. office of the Palestine Liberation Organization, Nov. 18, 2017.

Bolton will also say that the State Department will announce the closure of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) office in Washington out of concern about Palestinian attempts to prompt an ICC investigation of Israel.

As Bolton spoke before the Federalist Society, he promised retaliation for the ICC's "unjust prosecution" of alleged war crimes committed by US forces in Afghanistan. "We will take note if any countries cooperate with ICC investigations of the USA and its allies, and we will remember that cooperation".

A protester takes part in a demonstration against the US funding cut to the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East, in the Ramallah, the occupied West Bank, last week.

Bolton explicitly made clear just how far the Trump administration was prepared to go to ensure it remains dead.

Even when the PLO had agreed to recognize Israel's right to exist, its former leader Yasser Arafat refused to entertain the idea that Israel could retain even part of Jerusalem.

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