U.S. lifts sanctions on ICC prosecutor, court official

FILE PHOTO: Public Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda attends the trial for Malian Islamist militant Al-Hassan Ag Abdoul Aziz Ag Mohamed Ag Mahmoud at the ICC (International Criminal Court) in the Hague, the Netherlands July 8,2019. REUTERS/Eva Plevier/Pool

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The United States on Friday lifted sanctions on International Criminal Court prosecutor Fatou Bensouda that drew international criticism after they were imposed by the administration of former U.S. President Donald Trump.

The move, announced by U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken in a statement, lifts the sanctions imposed on Bensouda over her investigation into whether American forces committed war crimes in Afghanistan. It also removes Phakiso Mochochoko, head of the ICC’s Jurisdiction, Complementarity and Cooperation Division, from the Specially Designated Nationals list.

Blinken’s statement said the State Department also terminated a separate 2019 policy on visa restrictions on certain ICC personnel and added: “These decisions reflect our assessment that the measures adopted were inappropriate and ineffective.”

Reporting by David Brunnstrom and Daphne Psaledakis; Editing by Chris Reese

source: reuters.com