English | español | français | عربى | italiano

Invitation to Sign | Petition | Notes | Sign On | Signatures

Invitation to Sign

We, the International Association of Democratic Lawyers,1 invite you to join lawyers, jurists, Human Rights NGOs and Bar Associations from around the world in supporting this petition, which demands that the ICC’s Office of the Prosecutor ‘immediately move forward to investigate and refer for prosecution by the International Criminal Court those violations of International Humanitarian Law and International Human Rights Law committed by individuals acting or purporting to act on behalf of the State of Israel, which have occurred
and continue to occur within the jurisdiction of the Court.’

This petition is inspired by our previous international action begun in the 1980s, calling upon lawyers to support the campaign to free Nelson Mandela. We believe that this petition, just as the previous one proved to be for those living under Apartheid in South Africa, ‘is an essential first step in securing equal justice under law’ for the Palestinian people.2

We encourage lawyers, jurists, NGOs, Bar Associations, lawyers’ organisations, law firms and law school communities everywhere to sign the petition, either by signing below or by emailing us with a completed copy of the campaign form to lawyersstatement@iadllaw.org.

At a time when the rights of Palestinians are under a dramatically intensified attack,3 we believe that there has not been a more critical moment for lawyers the world over to call for the accountability of those who are responsible for subjecting Palestinian civilians to ‘the most serious crimes of international concern’. 4

Yours Faithfully,

Jeanne Mirer, President, IADL

International Lawyers’ Statement

This is on ongoing petition which will continue to collect signatures until all those responsible are successfully prosecuted.  However we encourage as many individuals and organisations as possible to sign before 15 October 2018 in order to be part of the first letter sent to the Office of the Prosecutor prior to the publishing of its next ‘Preliminary Examinations’ report.

To: Ms. Fatou Bom Bensouda, Office of The Prosecutor (OTP), the International Criminal Court

1. Mindful that ‘disregard and contempt for human rights have resulted in barbarous acts which have outraged the conscience of mankind’,i

2. Guided by the ‘Nürnberg Principles’ii and stressing in this regard the principle of individual criminal responsibility for international crimes, including war crimes and crimes against humanity,iii

3. Affirming that victims of gross violations of International Human Rights Law and serious violations of International Humanitarian Law have a right to a remedy and reparation,iv

4. Affirming ‘that the most serious crimes of concern to the international community as a whole must not go unpunished and that their effective prosecution must be ensured’,v

5. Recalling that Israel continues illegally to occupy Palestinian territory seized since 1967, vi which has resulted in the longest ongoing belligerent occupation of a territory anywhere in the world, whilst also laying siege to the Gaza strip following the IDF’s “disengagement” in 2005, vii

6. Denouncing the unimaginable atrocities that have been committed and continue to be committed by Israel against Palestinian civilians which deeply shock the conscience of humanity,

7. Recalling the countless resolutions from the UN General Assembly, UN Security Council and the Human Rights Council denouncing such violations by the State of Israel,viii

8. Recalling further that, notwithstanding numerous reports submitted by Palestinian and international NGOs to the OTP, war crimes and crimes against humanity have continued on an aggravated basis throughout the period of preliminary examination by the OTP, ix

9. Denouncing the failure and refusal by the State of Israel to hold accountable any of those suspected of committing crimes against Palestinian civilians, resulting in abandoning the rule of law and replacing it with widespread impunity for Israeli officials who have sanctioned, and for Israeli individuals who have perpetrated, such crimes. Impunity contributes to the continuation, intensification and recurrence of such crimes,x

10. Recalling Palestine’s accession to the Rome Statute and its acceptance of ICC jurisdiction over crimes committed in the OPT since 13 June 2014,xi following its recognition as a state by the international community,xii

11. Recalling the opening of a preliminary examination by the OTP on 16 January 2015 into the situation in Palestine,xiii and the overwhelming evidence supplied by Palestinian and international NGOs, concerning ‘past, ongoing and future crimes within the court’s jurisdiction, committed in all parts of the territory of the State of the Palestine’,xiv

12. Recalling the ICC’s obligations to undertake effective prosecutions and apply and interpret law in a manner ‘consistent with internationally recognised human rights’,xv and in this regard highlighting the right of Palestinian victims to a prompt investigation,xvi including not only the OTP’s preliminary examinations, but moving further to conduct full investigations and initiate prosecutions where appropriate,

13. I Declare that justice delayed is justice denied, and Demand the OTP immediately move forward to investigate and refer for prosecution by the International Criminal Court those gross violations of International Human Rights Law and serious violations of International Humanitarian Law committed by individuals acting or purporting to act on behalf of the State of Israel, which have occurred and continue to occur within the jurisdiction of the Court.

Sign On

To sign on to the statement, add your name and/or the name of your organization to the letter by using our online form: 

Please review the boxes below carefully (if you do not consent to your name being shared at all, then do not put a mark in either box.)

I consent to my name being shared, as part of a list of signatories, with the ICC Prosecutor.I consent to my name being published, as part of a list of signatories, on the IADL website.

This is an:
Individual EndorsementOrganizational EndorsementBoth

If you have difficulties with the form or prefer to email, please complete the campaign form and send it to us at lawyersstatement@iadllaw.org.

Initial Signatures


  • International Association of Democratic Lawyers
  • Arab Lawyers Union
  • Asociación Americana de Juristas
  • Bureau des Avocats Internationaux
  • Civil Liberties Defense Center
  • Community Movement Builders
  • Confederation of Lawyers of Asia and the Pacific (COLAP)
  • European Association of Lawyers for Democracy and World Human Rights (ELDH)
  • Foro de abogados/as de izquierdas-Red de abogados /as Democratas
  • Giuristi Democratici – Italia (Italian Democratic Lawyers)
  • Global Justice Human Rights Law
  • Haldane Society of Socialist Lawyers
  • Housing and Land Rights Network – Habitat International Coalition
  • International Action Center
  • International Association of People’s Lawyers Monitoring Committee on Attacks on Lawyers
  • Justice for Palestine Matters
  • Lawyers for Palestinian Human Rights
  • Legal Center Lesbos
  • National Association of Democratic Lawyers (South Africa)
  • National Lawyers Guild (United States)
  • Palestine Land Society
  • Palestinian Bar Association
  • Palestinian Centre for Human Rights
  • Portuguese Association of Democratic Jurists
  • PROGRESS Lawyers Network Antwerp
  • Samidoun: Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network
  • The Rights Forum


  • Ahmed Jibril Nabhan, lawyer, Center for the Protection of Human Rights
  • Alessandra Algostino, Associate professor of Constitutional Law, University of Turin
  • Ali Nassem Bajwa QC, barrister, Garden Court Chambers
  • Amith Gupta, attorney
  • Ana Vargas, jurist
  • Ann Schneider, attorney at law, National Lawyers Guild NYC Chapter
  • Anne Cadwallader, human rights campaigner, The Pat Finucane Centre
  • Antonio Bernardo Colaco, Justice of the Supreme Court of Justice – Jubilee – Portugal, Member of the Portuguese Association of Democratic Jurists (APJP)
  • António Filipe Rodrigues, law professor/member of Parliament, Portuguese Communist Party
  • Arnold Kawano, attorney, National Asian Pacific American Bar Association
  • Arun Abrol, lawyer, International Association of Democratic Lawyers
  • Audrey J Bomse, lawyer, National Lawyers Guild
  • Azadeh Shahshahani, Project South; National Lawyers Guild
  • Barbara Harvey, attorney, National Lawyers Guild & its International Committee’s Palestine Subcommittee, ACLU & ACLU of Michigan
  • Barbara Spinelli, lawyer, Giuristi Democratici
  • Beth S. Lyons, attorney, International Association of Democratic Lawyers
  • Bill Bowring, Professor of Law, Birkbeck College, University of London; Barrister of England and Wales; President, European Lawyers for Democracy and Human Rights (ELDH)
  • Camilo Perez-Bustillo, Lawyer, Law professor, human rights advocate; International Tribunal of Conscience of Peoples in Movement/University of Texas, El Paso
  • Carlin Meyer, law professor, attorney, arbitrator, New York Law School
  • Carlos Orjuela, Solicitor, Haldane Society of Socialist Lawyers
  • Carol Krauthamer Smith, attorney
  • Charles C. Palmer-Young, artist/paralegal/historian, NLG Jailhouse Lawyers
  • Charlie Holt, In-house Legal Counsel, Greenpeace International
  • Charlotte Kates, International Coordinator, Samidoun Palestinian Prisoner Solidarity Network
  • Charlotte Lombard, lawyer
  • Cheryl Williams, retired attorney
  • Chitro Shahabuddin, jurist, translator and painter; Droit Solidarité – Association Internationale des Juristes Démocrates
  • Christopher Black, international criminal lawyer,  Counsel List, ICC, Member, International Criminal Court Bar Association, Law Society of Ontario
  • Clair Rinawi, lawyer, Palestinian Bar Association
  • Claire Gilchrist, Lawyer, IADL
  • Claudia Viviana Rocca, lawyer, Asociación Americana de Juristas/ Docente Universidad Nacional de Moreno/ Coordinadora Legal y Técnica del Ente Espacio para la Memoria Promoción y Defensa de los Derechos Humanos
  • Cooper Brinson, attorney, Civil Liberties Defense Center
  • Cristina Stamato, lawyer
  • Crystal O’Grady, JD, Program Manager
  • Professor Curtis FJ Doebbler, lawyer and professor of law, University of Makeni
  • D. La Luz, lawyer and historian, American Association of Jurists
  • Daniela Muradas Antunes, professor and lawyer, AAJ
  • David Gespass, attorney, Gespass & Johnson
  • DeWayne Boyd, lawyer, National Conference of Black Lawyers
  • Edre U. Olalia, President, National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers
  • Eileen Weitzman, attorney
  • Elena Vazquez, FAI-RADE
  • Esra Salmanli, lawyer
  • Fabio Marcelli, researcher, Institute of international legal studies of the National Research Council
  • Fausto Gianelli, Lawyer, Giuristi Democratici – Italia
  • Francisco Madeira Lopes, lawyer
  • Franck Magennis, barrister, Garden Court Chambers and Haldane Society of Socialist Lawyers
  • Gabriel Marcel Ikopi Moleko, NGO Construisons ensemble le monde
  • Garrett Wright, attorney
  • Gary Hicks, tenant rights organizer, Institute for the Contemporary Study of Society[ICSS], Oakland CA
  • Ghanendra Shrestha, lawyer, International Association of Democratic Lawyers
  • Gianfranco Fattorini, human rights consultant, American Association of Jurists
  • Gill Boehringer, International Association of People’s Lawyers Monitoring Committee on Attacks on Lawyers
  • Greg Ó Ceallaigh, barrister, Garden Court Chambers
  • Hasan Tarique Chowdhury, Advocate, Supreme Court of Bangladesh; Secretary General, Bangladesh Afro Asian Peoples Solidarity Organization
  • Helena Casquiero, lawyer
  • Jackelyn Mariano, lawyer, National Lawyers Guild International Committee
  • Jad Khalil, Defence Counsel in Special Tribunal for Lebanon, Chair of ICCBA Defence Committee
  • Jan Douwe Keulen, director, The Rights Forum
  • Jan Fermon, lawyer
  • Jan Susler, attorney, National Lawyers Guild
  • Jeanne Mirer, Attorney, President, International Association of Democratic Lawyers
  • Jerome Wallingford, lawyer
  • Jesus Enrique Iglesias Fernández, lawyer
  • Joe Catron, International Solidarity Movement
  • Joel Richard Kupfermn, attorney, Environmental Justice Initiative; National Lawyers Guild – Environmental Justice Committee
  • John Philpot, lawyer, AAJ
  • John T. Fussell, labor lawyer
  • John Wheat Gibson, lawyer
  • Jonathan Sternberg, attorney; union representative and organizer; National Lawyers Guild
  • José Manuel Dantas Ferreira, lawyer
  • Joseph Schechla, coordinator, representative at UN Geneva, Housing and Land Rights Network – Habitat International Coalition
  • Jun Sasamoto, Lawyer, Confederation of Lawyers of Asia and the Pacific (COLAP); Tokyo University
  • Kamau Franklin, organizer, attorney, Community Movement Builders
  • Kathleen Garbacz, attorney at law, Law Office of Kathleen M. Garbacz, PLLC
  • Kathleen M. Johnson, attorney, National Lawyers Guild and Gespass & Johnson
  • Kenji Urata, Professor Emeritus, Waseda University, Japan; Vice-President, International Association of Lawyers Against Nuclear Weapons
  • Kevin Handly, Attorney
  • Khalil Allahham, jurist, PhD candidate in international law
  • Krish Govender, attorney, National Association of Democratic Lawyers (South Africa)
  • Kurt Thornbladh, lawyer, National Lawyers Guild
  • Laetitia Parmentier, lawyer, Progress Lawyers Network
  • Lamia Mobada, lawyer, Arab Lawyers Union
  • Lamis J. Deek, human rights attorney, Global Justice Human Rights Law
  • Lauren I. Freidenberg, attorney, Civil Rights Litigator at Iredale & Yoo, APC
  • Lennox S. Hinds, lawyer, professor emeritus, Rutgers University / International Association of Democratic Lawyers
  • Leonardo Valle, Philippine Network of Food Security Programmes
  • Lhem J. Naval, lawyer, Institute for the Rule of Law
  • Lieven De Cauter, RITCS & Department of Architecture, KU Leuven
  • Liz Davies, barrister, Garden Court Chambers
  • Lorraine Leete, Lawyer, Legal Centre Lesvos
  • Luis Carlos Moro, lawyer, American Association of Jurists
  • Luis Roberto Zamora Bolaños, Lawyer, Independent
  • Madalena Santos, Jurist – Teacher at the Law Faculty of Lisbon; Portuguese Association of Democratic Jurists – President
  • Mahmoud Kittaneh, lawyer, Palestinian Bar Association
  • Manoel Frederico Vieira, lawyer, Associação Brasileira de Advogados Trabalhistas
  • Mariana Padias, Attorney
  • Marije Kamp, Legal advisor
  • Mario Joseph, lawyer, Bureau des Avocats Internationaux
  • Mário Rodrigo Cunha, lawyer
  • Marjorie Cohn, Emerita Professor of Law, Thomas Jefferson School of Law
  • Mark Burton, lawyer, Law Office of Mark Burton
  • Martha Jean Baker, Human Rights Lawyer, Haldane Society
  • Martin Almada, lawyer, member of the Executive Committee of the AAJ
  • Mary Nazzal-Batayneh, barrister, English Bar
  • Matteo Bonaglia, lawyer, IADL, DS, AvocatsDebout, Université Paris-Ouest Nanterre
  • Md Rezaul Karim, Academician, Southern University Bangladesh
  • Michael Letwin, Public defender, Former President, Association of Legal Aid Attorneys/UAW 2325; Labor for Palestine
  • Michael Sayers, lawyer, Slater and Gordon Lawyers
  • Micòl Savia, Lawyer, IADL
  • Mireille Fanon Mendes France, legal consultant
  • Mohamed Abou Chahine, Lawyer
  • Nadine Dossou Sakponou, lawyer, SCPA Robert M. Dossou
  • Nancy Demicheli, Project coordinator, CFI
  • Natasha Lycia Ora Bannan, Lawyer, National Lawyers Guild
  • Neri J. Colmenares, Chairperson, National Union of Peoples’ Lawyers
  • Nerida Harford-Bell, barrister, Garden Court Chambers
  • Nicole Banister, lawyer, National Lawyers Guild
  • Nicole Philips, Attorney and Law Professor, Institute for Justice & Democracy in Haiti
  • Nilo Da Cunha Jamardo Beiro, lawyer
  • Niloufer Bhagwat, Vice President, Indian Association of Lawyers
  • Norma Jullien Cravotta, student lawyer, Legal Centre Lesbos
  • Nuredin Ahmad Allan, lawyer, Associacion brasilena de juristas por la democracia
  • Osamu Niikura, Attorney at Law, Professor emeritus, Aoyama Gakuin University, JALISA & IADL
  • Paul Heywood-Smith, QC, barrister, South Australian Bar Association
  • Pooja Gehi, Attorney, National Lawyers Guild
  • Rachel Lederman, attorney at law
  • Raji Sourani, Director of the PCHR, Palestinian Centre for Human Rights
  • Rajiv Menon QC, barrister
  • Reyvi Marinas, lawyer, Reyvi Marinas & Associates
  • Richard Harvey, Barrister, Garden Court Chambers, London, England
  • Robert Atkins, Solicitor
  • Ronald Isaac, attorney
  • Sabah al-Mukhtar, President, Arab Lawyers Association (UK); Arab Lawyers Network
  • Salah Abdel-Ati, lawyer, Masarat Center
  • Salman Abu-Sitta, President, Palestine Land Society
  • Sartaj Chaudhary , International Lawyer , Self Employed
  • Serife Ceren Uysal, lawyer, Progressive Lawyers Association
  • Steven Allen, NGO director, Birkbeck College, University of London
  • Suzanne Adely, Attorney, International Association of Democratic Lawyers, National Lawyers Guild
  • Thanh Le, lawyer, Vietnam Lawyers Association
  • Thiago Oliveira Agustinho, lawyer, Associacion brasilena de juristas por la democracia
  • Thomas Schmidt, lawyer, ELDH Secretary General, European Association of Lawyers for Democracy and World Human Rights ELDH
  • Tjarda Zethof, lawyer, Steenvlinder
  • Tom Franssen, Student, Maastricht University
  • Tom Hennessey, lawyer
  • Ugo Giannangeli, lawyer (retired)
  • Uri Strauss, lawyer
  • Vanesa Menéndez, PhD researcher, Università degli Studi di Milano
  • Vanessa Ramos, Asociación Americana de Juristas
  • Veronika Miteva, Legal consultant, Maastricht University
  • Vicky Aggelidou, Lawyer
  • Wade Mansell, Emeritus Professor of International Law, University of Kent
  • Xavier Sauvignet, lawyer


1 The International Association of Democratic Lawyers (IADL) is a non-governmental organization with consultative status before the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations (ECOSOC). See http://www.iadllaw.org/ for more details.
2 Taken from the Pamphlet of the Lawyers Campaign to Free Nelson Mandela ‘Nelson Mandela. Lawyer, Leader, Prisoner’ (1986)
3 For example, the end of 2017 and the first half of 2018 has seen (1) the USA’s recognition of Jerusalem as the Capital of Israel, an act overwhelming condemned by the majority of the international community https://undocs.org/A/ES-10/L.22, (2) The violent repression of Palestinian civilians protesting against the Israeli Occupation during the ‘Great March of Return’ Protests https://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=23100&LangID=E and (3) the USA’s cutting of all funding to UNRWA with a view to taking the right of return “off the table” https://www.timesofisrael.com/haley-palestinian-right-of-return-should-be-off-the-table/
4 The Rome Statute, Article 1

i Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Preamble

ii Principles of International Law Recognized in the Charter of the Nürnberg Tribunal and in the Judgement of the Tribunal, International Law Commission (Nürnberg Principles) – Affirmed by General Assembly resolution 95(I). The Nürnberg Charter is considered reflective of Customary International law (See: Tadic, Opinion and Judgment, Trial Chamber, 7 May 1997, para. 623; and Tadic, Decision on the Defence Motion for Interlocutory Appeal on Jurisdiction, Appeals Chamber, 2 October 1995, para. 141). In the Eichmann case, the Israeli Supreme Court held that General Assembly resolution 95 (I) is evidence that the Nürnberg principles form part of customary international law. According to the Court, “if there was any doubt as to this appraisal of the Nuremberg Principles as principles that have formed part of customary international law ‘since time immemorial,’ such doubt has been removed by two international documents. We refer to the United Nations Assembly resolution of 11.12.46 which ‘affirms the principles of international law recognized by the Charter of the Nuremberg Tribunal, and the judgment of the Tribunal,’ and also to the United Nations Assembly resolution of the same date, No. 96 (1) in which the Assembly ‘affirms that genocide is a crime under international law’” (Attorney General of Israel v. Eichmann, Supreme Court of Israel (1962) 36 ILR 277).

iii Ibid, Principles I and VI, which in turn are reflected in Articles 5 and 25 of the Rome Statute.

iv See: Basic Principles and Guidelines on the Right to a Remedy and Reparation for Victims of Gross Violations of International Human Rights Law and Serious Violations of International Humanitarian Law (UNGA Res. 60/147 of 16 December 2005); see further: Article 8 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; Article 2 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights; Article 6 of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination; Article 14 of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, Article 39 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child; Article 3 of the Hague Convention respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land of 18 October 1907 (Convention IV); Article 91 of the Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949; and relating to the Protection of Victims of International Armed Conflicts (Protocol I) of 8 June 1977; and Articles 68 and 75 of the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court.

v Preamble, Rome Statute

vi Legal Consequences of the Construction of A Wall in the Occupied Palestinian territory (Advisory Opinion) [2004] ICJ Rep 2004, [78]

vii No international organization or other relevant body at the international level has found Israel’s “disengagement” from the Gaza Strip in 2005 to terminate its ongoing status as an Occupying Power. As the OTP has recognised in its Flotilla Report: “the prevalent view within the international community is that Israel remains an occupying power in Gaza despite the 2005 disengagement”, para. 25, concluding: “there is a reasonable basis upon which to conclude that Israel continues to be an occupying power in Gaza despite the 2005 disengagement.” Id. at paras. 27, 29. See further, “Situation of Palestine: Closure of Gaza – Palestinian Human Rights and Victims’ Communication to the International Criminal Court Pursuant to Article 15 of the Rome Statute Requesting Investigation and Prosecution of the Illegal Closure of the Gaza Strip: Persecution and Other Humane Acts Committed against the Civilian Population as Crimes Against Humanity”, submitted by Palestinian Centre for Human Rights, Al-Haq, Al-Mezan Centre for Human Rights and Aldameer Association for Human Rights, November 2016.

viii See Footnotes 22 through 26 to the May 15, 2018 Referral by the State of Palestine

ix See, above Footnote vii, “Situation of Palestine: Closure of Gaza”. Further carefully researched confidential submissions have been filed with the ICC by Palestinian human rights organizations on behalf of victims of crimes against humanity committed by high-level Israeli officials in the course of “Operation Protective Edge”.

x Report of the detailed findings of the independent commission of inquiry established pursuant to Human Rights Council resolution s-21/1 24 June 2015 A/HRC/29/CRP.4 [650] –[651]

xi Date acceded 2 January 2015, date lodged declaration under article 12(3) of Rome statute accepting jurisdiction 1 January 2015

xii UNGA ‘Status of Palestine in the UN’ (2012) UN Doc A/RES/67/19, Art 2

xiii The Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court, Fatou Bensouda, opens a preliminary examination of the situation in Palestine, 16 January 2015.

xiv See above, footnotes vii, ix.

xv Rome Statute, Preamble and Article 21

xvi UN Human Rights Committee, General Comment No. 20; Velasquez Rodriguez IACtHR Series C 4 (1988) [174], [176] and [177] Estamirov and Others v. Russia ECHR para [89]