At the weekend Palestinians living in London obtained an arrest warrant, for alleged war crimes during last year's Israel-Gaza conflict, from a London court when they discovered that Livni was planning a visit to England. Livni was tipped off and immediately cancelled her travel plans.
This is somewhat reminiscent of General Pinochet's arrest in London in 1998, on a warrant issued by a Spanish court for crimes allegedly committed in South America. Pinochet was eventually released two years later without having been convicted of any offence.
It is not at all obvious why any English court should consider itself competent to try a crime that did not take place on English soil. Courts have important powers to ensure that fair trials occur. One of the most important of these is the power to compel witnesses to attend court and testify. Clearly witnesses in a foreign land cannot be coerced into attendance.
Additionally there is the issue of legal domain. If a person is tried in an English court for a crime in a foreign land, which law applies - English law or the law of the foreign land? If Livni had been tried in England could she have defended herself using the small-print of Israeli law? Would an English court have to conduct its proceedings in Hebrew?
Clearly this would be a nonsense. English courts are now too big for their boots. At the moment they aren't even managing to keep our home-grown criminals off the streets; they should stop trying to police the world and do the job we pay them for.