LONDON – Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Desmond Tutu called Sunday for Tony Blair and George Bush to face prosecution at the International Criminal Court for their role in the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of Iraq

Tutu, the retired Anglican Church’s archbishop of South Africa, wrote in an op-ed piece for The Observer newspaper that the former leaders of Britain and the United States should be made to “answer for their actions.”

The Iraq war “has destabilized and polarized the world to a greater extent than any other conflict in history,” wrote Tutu, who was awarded the Nobel prize in 1984.

“Those responsible for this suffering and loss of life should be treading the same path as some of their African and Asian peers who have been made to answer for their actions in the Hague,” he said.

The Hague, Netherlands-based court is the world’s first permanent war crimes tribunal and has been in operation for 10 years. So far it has launched prosecutions only in Africa, including Sudan, Congo, Libya and Ivory Coast.

The United States is among nations that do not recognize the International Criminal Court.

Tutu has long been a staunch critic of the Iraq war, while others opposed to the conflict have previously called for Bush and Blair to face prosecution at the Hague.

Tutu last week withdrew from a conference in South Africa due to Blair’s presence at the event.

In response, Blair said he had great respect for Tutu’s work to tackle apartheid in South Africa, but accused him of repeating inaccurate criticisms of the Iraq war.

“To repeat the old canard that we lied about the intelligence is completely wrong, as every single independent analysis of the evidence has shown,” Blair said. “And to say that the fact that (deposed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein) massacred hundreds of thousands of his citizens is irrelevant to the morality of removing him is bizarre.”