Statement of ICC Prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, on the discovery of multiple alleged mass graves and continued violence in Libya: “I will not hesitate to expand my investigations and potential prosecutions to cover any new instances of crimes”

I am deeply concerned by recent reports concerning multiple mass graves found in the city of Tarhuna and its surroundings in Libya. My Office has received credible information regarding eleven alleged mass graves containing men, women and children. These findings may constitute evidence of war crimes or crimes against humanity.

I call on the Libyan authorities to take all the necessary measures to protect and secure the mass grave sites and to ensure that all actions taken in this regard are conducted in a manner that will not prejudice future investigations.

I welcome the decision of the United Nations Secretary General, António Guterres, offering support in this regard, through the statement of 12 June 2020. My Office looks forward to cooperating with the Libyan authorities, the United Nations, and all relevant partners working to investigate this evidence of potential atrocity crimes in Tarhuna.

In addition, I reiterate my concern at the grave escalation of violence and the high numbers of civilian casualties, reportedly largely resulting from airstrikes and shelling operations. read more

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