Professor Eugene Kontorovich is one of the world’s preeminent experts on universal jurisdiction, international law and the Arab-Israeli conflict. He is a professor at Antonin Scalia Law School at George Mason University and the Director of its Center for International Law in the Middle East. Professor Kontorovich has published over thirty major scholarly articles and book chapters in leading law reviews and peer-reviewed journals in the United States and Europe, including the American Journal of International Law, International Review of Law & Economics, Stanford Law Review, California Law Review, University of Pennsylvania Law Review and Virginia Law Review. Professor Kontorovich is the Head of the International Law Department at the Kohelet Policy Forum. In his work at Forum Kohelet, he regularly advises senior Israeli, U.S. and European officials on a variety of diplomatic issues.
It’s very important to note that the treatment of this jurisdictional issue is absolutely unique. There is no other situation where any other entity that is not clearly recognized as a state has been admitted into the ICC.
Professor Kontorovich explains why the International Criminal Court has no jurisdiction over the Situation in Palestine. This is the only ICC proceeding on behalf of a non-state member (Palestine), over the activities of a state (Israel) that is not a member. Statehood under international law means controlling territory and governing yourself. These are exactly the things that the Palestinians argue they do not do. There is no other ICC member state that is not a member of the United Nations. There are many other entities whose statehood is disputed, from Kosovo to Taiwan. None of them have been granted membership at the International Criminal Court – all of them look more like states than the Palestinian Authority.