ICJ charges ‘morally repugnant’ — Israel – DW – 05/25/2024

Israel’s leadership on Friday said that genocide charges brought by South Africa before the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in the Hague were “false, outrageous and morally repugnant.”

The comments were made in a joint statement issued by the head of Israel’s National Security Council and the spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

The statement comes after the ICJ on Friday ruled that Israel “must immediately halt its military offensive and any other action in the Rafah Governate which may inflict on Palestinian groups in Gaza conditions of life that would bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part.”

“Following the horrific attack against the citizens of Israel on October 7th, 2023, Israel embarked upon a defensive and just war to eliminate Hamas and to secure the release of our hostages,” Israel’s joint statement said. 

Israel said that it was acting on the basis of its right to self-defense “in compliance with international law, including international humanitarian law.”

Israel also said it would not conduct military actions in Rafah “which may inflict on the Palestinian civilian population in Gaza conditions of life that could bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part.”

The Gaza war broke out after Hamas’ October 7 attack on Israel resulted in the deaths of some 1,200 people, mostly civilians. 

Militants also took 252 hostages, 121 of whom remain in Gaza, including 37 the Israeli army says are dead.

According to Gaza’s Hamas-run Health Ministry, more than 35,000 people have been killed in the Palestinian territory since the war began.

Last week South African lawyers asked the ICJ to order an emergency halt to the military operation in Rafah —  a city in southern Gaza where more than one million people are sheltering — accusing Israel of intensifying what it calls “genocide” in Gaza.

South Africa has also been pushing for Israel to end its wider war in Gaza, but the court held back from issuing an order that covers the entire territory.

World court rules Israel must stop its Rafah offensive

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