ICJ Ruling On Israel Draws Mixed Reactions


The International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruled on Friday, January 26, 2024, that Israel must prevent and punish acts of genocide in Gaza, but did not order a cease-fire, as South Africa requested.

South Africa brought the case before the ICJ, accusing Israel of committing genocide in Gaza. The court found that there was a basis to proceed with the case and ordered Israel to take measures to protect the Palestinians in Gaza from genocide.

Israel rejected the court’s authority and said it would continue its war on Gaza, which it says is necessary to defend itself from Hamas, the Islamist group that controls the territory. The United States, Israel’s closest ally, expressed its disappointment with the court’s ruling and reiterated its support for Israel’s right to self-defense.

The European Union, which has been critical of Israel’s actions in Gaza, said that it respected the court’s ruling and called on both parties to comply with international law and human rights. The EU’s foreign policy chief, Josep Borrell, said that the court’s ruling “highlights the urgency of ending the cycle of violence and resuming a meaningful dialogue towards a two-state solution.”

Hamas praised the court’s ruling as a “step in the right direction” and a “victory for the Palestinian cause.” Hamas’s political leader, Ismail Haniyeh, said that the court’s ruling “confirms the legitimacy of the Palestinian resistance and the criminality of the Israeli occupation.”

The Palestinian Authority, which governs parts of the West Bank, also welcomed the court’s ruling and called on the international community to pressure Israel to stop its aggression and lift its blockade on Gaza. The PA’s President, Mahmoud Abbas, said that the court’s ruling “proves that the Palestinian people have the right to defend themselves and to seek justice and accountability for the crimes committed against them.”

The court’s ruling is legally binding, but the court has no way to enforce it. The court’s ruling could also influence the ongoing investigation by the International Criminal Court (ICC) into alleged war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by both sides in the conflict.

Original article

Al Bawaba News

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