More than 76,000 people have signed a petition on the website of the British Parliament, calling on the government to arrest Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for war crimes against Palestinians when he visits London next month.
The online petition, which went viral on August 7, demands the apprehension of Israel’s 65-year-old chairman of the Likud party upon arrival in London.
The arrest petition is for Netanyahu's involvement in the massacre of thousands of Palestinians during the summer 2014 Israeli onslaught against the blockaded Gaza Strip. The petition collected 76,062 signatures as of Sunday morning.
“Under international law, he should be arrested for war crimes upon arrival in the UK for the massacre of over 2,000 civilians in 2014,” the petition says, referring to the Israeli prime minister’s scheduled September visit.
After 10,000 signatures, the British government must respond to the petition, and after 100,000 signatures, it will be considered for debate in the parliament. The deadline for signing the petition is February 7, 2016.
Meanwhile, the British government has responded by saying, “Under UK and international law, visiting heads of foreign governments, such as Prime Minister Netanyahu, have immunity from legal process, and cannot be arrested or detained.”
Israel started its military campaign against Gaza in early July 2014. The offensive ended on August 26, 2014, with a truce that went into effect following indirect negotiations between representatives from Palestinian resistance movement Hamas and the Israeli regime in the Egyptian capital, Cairo.
Nearly 2,200 Palestinians, including 577 children, lost their lives in the Israeli attacks. Over 11,100 others were also injured.
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