Court to probe Afghan war crimes

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The chief prosecutor at the International Criminal Court (ICC) says he is gathering information about possible war crimes in Afghanistan.

Luis Moreno-Ocampo says that he will be examining claims relating to both Nato soldiers and Taliban insurgents.

He said the court had received allegations from many sources, relating to attacks and collateral damage.

But the court will only become involved if Kabul or the UN Security Council ask it to look into allegations.

Afghanistan signed the treaty that established the Hague-based court.

Any war crime committed on its territory by either Afghan nationals or foreign forces can be investigated by the court.

The ICC began operating in 2002 and is the world's first permanent war crimes tribunal.

Under the treaty, the court can step in only when countries are unwilling or unable to dispense justice themselves for genocide, crimes against humanity or war crimes.

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