The ICJ orders Israel to “immediately” stop its military offensive in Rafah and the release of all hostages

The ICJ orders Israel to “immediately” stop its military offensive in Rafah and the release of all hostages
The ICJ orders Israel to “immediately” stop its military offensive in Rafah and the release of all hostages

Israel once again targeted by international jurisdiction. This Friday, at 3 p.m., the International Court of Justice (ICJ) issued its decision on South Africa’s request to order an end to the Israeli military offensive in Gaza, accusing Israel of “genocide”. The Hague Palace orders Israel to “immediately” stop its military offensive in Rafah, where the IDF launched ground operations on May 7 despite opposition from the international community.

Israel must “immediately stop its military offensive, and any other action carried out in the Rafah governorate, which would be likely to inflict on the group of Palestinians in Gaza conditions of existence capable of leading to its physical or partial destruction,” declared the jurisdiction.

The ICJ also demanded “the immediate and unconditional release” of the hostages held in Gaza by Hamas.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu brings together at 5:00 p.m. (2:00 p.m. GMT) for “consultation” several ministers of his government during a conference call about the decision of the International Court of Justice ordering Israel to stop its military offensive in Rafah, his office announced Friday.

South Africa welcomes the “stronger” decision of the ICJ. The African country, which entered the court at the end of December, wanted the court to order Israel to “immediately” cease all its military operations, including in Rafah (south), and to facilitate access to humanitarian aid. For its part, Israel had expressed its desire that the court reject this request, arguing that a forced ceasefire would allow Hamas fighters to regroup and would make it impossible to release hostages taken during the Islamist movement’s attack. Palestinian on October 7. This affair is “completely disconnected” from reality and is a “caricature” of the United Nations Convention on Genocide which Israel is accused of having violated, Israel also retorted.

Binding value

In January, the ICJ already issued a ruling calling on Israel to do everything in its power to prevent any act of genocide and allow humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip. She did not then go so far as to ask for a “ceasefire”.

The ICJ’s decision comes a few days after a historic request from the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Karim Khan has requested arrest warrants for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, his Defense Minister and three Hamas leaders for alleged crimes committed in the Gaza Strip and Israel.

The decisions of the International Court of Justice have binding force for the parties involved. It is also not possible for the countries concerned to take legal action following this decision.

Although binding, the ICJ itself does not have the means to enforce its decisions. Only a UN Security Council resolution could force a state to apply them. The United States, which has widely denounced the ICC decision, could then veto such a resolution.

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