BBSNews 2015-01-18 — By Michael Hess. The accession of Palestine to the Rome Statute solidifies the recognition by 138 world nations that recognize the state of Palestine. I have written previously that the language used in the November 2012 UN General Assembly included 138 states. Drilling down in the other relevant resolutions seemed to confirm that Palestine was recognized as a UN Observer State as declared under the 1988 Palestinian declaration of independence. As such Palestine would be able to join international treaties and this they have done.
Last year on April 1st, 2014 Palestine joined 15 treaties and conventions including the Geneva Conventions. On January, 2, 2015, this year Palestine joined 16 international treaties and conventions including the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC).
On January 2nd, 2015 according to the UN, the Palestinian Authority joined 16 additional treaties including the Rome Statute in Palestine’s bid to break the occupation multilaterally under the rule of law.
On the way to full statehood
BBSNews specifically asked Fadi El Abdallah, a spokesman for the ICC about the reported claim by US State Department spokesperson Jen Psaki that “It [Palestine] doesn’t qualify to join the ICC” and he said:
The UN SG accepted the Palestinian’s instrument of accession to the Rome Statute on the basis of UNGA resolution 67/19 of 29 November 2012 granting Palestine the status of “Non-member observer State” in the United Nations. The State of Palestine thus became the 123rd State Party to the ICC.
Joe Lauria for the conservative Wall Street Journal wrote on January 7th, 2015 that “officials and analysts” gained the right to join the treaty as a state. This was a predictable result of the decision in December 2012 when 138 nations voted for Palestine to become a UN Observer State. His story outlines the precedent from Switzerland’s accession to the statute:
The Palestinians gained the right to join the court when they became a nonmember U.N. observer state in the General Assembly in 2012, officials and analysts say.
The legal precedent is Switzerland. Its ICC ratification was deposited with the U.N. Oct. 12, 2001, when it was only a U.N. nonmember observer state, as the Palestinians are today. Switzerland became a full U.N. member state Sept. 10, 2002.
While no one was looking, Palestine has been well on it’s way to undeniable statehood for many years.