There has been a growing pressure in the International Criminal Court to investigate the human rights abuses in the territory controlled by the Islamic State or ISIS. The chief prosecutor, Fatou Bensouda, stated Wednesday that her office had received reports of “crimes of unspeakable cruelty.” However, the court has no jurisdiction over Iraq and Syria where the acts occurred or over the group’s leaders. For an investigation to begin, the United Nations Security Council would have to ask the court to begin an investigation since the change in jurisdiction would have to come from outside the court. Another option would be for Iraq and Syria to accept the court’s jurisdiction, which won’t happen anytime soon. The office has looked into several different options to attempt to investigate the crimes by ISIS. There have been several thousand foreign fighters join ISIS, however, they appear to be low-ranking and could be investigated by their home courts but not the international court.
Something needs to be done about the human rights crimes committed by ISIS. Everything ISIS has done has been extremely cruel and unusual. The International Criminal Court needs to make an exception to investigate ISIS before they harm more innocent people. William Schabas, an international law professor at Middlesex University in Britain, claims that there is no rule that said that an organization could not be referred to the court, even if it operated in countries that were not members. These Islamic militants need to be prosecuted for what they have done.