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Israeli and Palestinian resistance groups have engaged this week in their fiercest round of fighting since 2014, with punishing Israeli airstrikes on Gaza and militants based in the densely populated enclave firing over 1,600 rockets into Israel. At least 87 Palestinians and seven Israelis have died.
The International Criminal Court's top prosecutor Fatou Bensouda has issued a statement indicating that individuals involved in a new eruption of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict may be targeted by the investigation now underway into war crimes.
The ICC's Fatou Bensouda told Reuters on Wednesday she would press ahead with her inquiry even without the cooperation of Israel, which has accused her office of anti-Semitic bias and rejected membership in the treaty-based court, questioning its jurisdiction.
"These are events that we are looking at very seriously," Bensouda said. "We are monitoring very closely, and I remind you that an investigation has opened, and the evolution of these events could also be something we look at."
Israel and Palestinian resistance groups have engaged this week in their fiercest round of fighting since 2014. Israel launched several airstrikes on Gaza that have targeted civilian areas, while militants based in the densely populated enclave have fired over 1,600 rockets into Israel. At least 87 Palestinians and seven Israelis have died.
At least 80 people have been killed in #Gaza since Israel began its bombing campaign in the besieged territory on Monday.
In March, the ICC office said it was opening a formal investigation into suspected war crimes in the conflict after nearly five years of preliminary inquiries.
The ICC examines whether Israeli forces committed war crimes - including disproportionate attacks and wilful killings of civilians - during the 2014 Gaza war when Israeli armored forces swept into the heavily urbanized enclave.
While the investigation is "politically fraught," Bensouda said, she denied accusations by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that her office was biased or was singling out Israel.
"It's indeed unfortunate that these are the reactions that the prime minister would have. This is far from the truth," said Bensouda, a Gambian who will be replaced by Britain's Karim Khan when her nine-year term ends next month.