Politics & News

ICJ Ruling: How World Reacted to the Historic Decision?

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) ordered Israel on Friday to halt its military assault on the southern Gaza city of Rafah.

This decision came days after the International Criminal Court’s chief prosecutor requested arrest warrants for Israeli Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, his Defense Minister Yoav Gallant and three senior Hamas leaders for war crimes and crimes against humanity committed in the Gaza Strip.

While the ICJ has no means to enforce its orders, the decision further increases pressure on Israel, marking its global isolation over its brutal campaign on Gaza. The landmark emergency ruling in the case brought by South Africa against Israel, accusing it of genocide, has stirred reactions across the world.

Palestinian Reaction

Hamas hailed the World Court ruling but criticized that it didn’t include the entire Gaza Strip. Hamas official Basem Naim said: “We welcome the decision by the World Court” which calls Israeli military to end its aggression on Rafah. “We believe it is not enough since the occupation aggression across the Gaza Strip and especially in northern Gaza is just as brutal and dangerous,” he added.

Naim called the UN Security Council to take measures to compel Israel to implement the decision. He welcomed the ICJ’s request to allow investigation committees to investigate acts of war of genocide against the Palestinian people. “Hamas pledges to cooperate with investigation committees,” he said.

Commending the ruling, Palestinian Authority spokesperson Nabil Abu Rudeineh said: “The presidency welcomes the decision issued by the International Court of Justice, which represents an international consensus on the demand to stop the all-out war on Gaza.”

Arab Support

Several Arab countries supported the ICJ ruling. The Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a statement welcoming the decision. It said: “Saudi Arabia welcomes the decision of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ordering Israel to immediately stop military attacks or any other offensive actions in the Rafah governorate, based on the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.”

It added: “It stresses the importance that international resolutions should involve all Palestinian areas in accordance with the relevant resolutions of international legitimacy.”

Similarly, Egypt’s Foreign Ministry called on Israel to “comply with its legal obligations within the framework of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide and international humanitarian law, and to implement all interim measures issued by the ICJ, which are considered legally binding and enforceable.”

“Egypt stresses that Israel bears full legal responsibility for the deteriorating humanitarian conditions in the Gaza Strip as the occupying power, calling on Israel to stop its systematic policies against the Palestinian people of targeting, starvation and siege in violation of all provisions of international law and international humanitarian law,” it said.

Likewise, Jordan Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi hailed the decision. He said: “Once again, the ICJ exposes Israel’s war crimes in Gaza. And once again, the Israeli Govt reacts with disdain to Int’l law, refusing to heed the Court’s orders. The SC (Security Council) must shoulder its responsibility, put an end to Israel’s impunity & to double standards in enforcing Int’l law.”

Israeli Rejection

The offices of Israel’s Prime Minister and Foreign Ministry issued a joint statement slamming the court’s decision. They called South Africa’s accusations against Israel at the ICJ in The Hague regarding genocide “false, outrageous and disgusting.”

Meanwhile, Israeli Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich said: “Those who demand that the State of Israel stop the war, demand that it decrees itself to cease to exist. We will not agree to that.”

In addition, the Israeli opposition leader Yair Lapid criticized the decision, saying “The fact that the court in the Hague did not make the connection in its ruling between the cessation of fighting in Rafah and the return of the hostages and Israel’s right to defend itself against terrorism is a moral collapse and a moral disaster.”

ICJ Ruling: How the World Reacted to the Historic Decision?
Israeli military vehicles operate in the Gazan side of the Rafah Crossing

Minister Benny Gantz, a member of Israel’s war Cabinet, said that Israel is committed to “continue fighting to return its hostages and promise the security of its citizens – wherever and whenever necessary – including in Rafah.”

He added: “We will continue operating in accordance with international law wherever we might operate, while safeguarding to the best extent possible the civilian population. Not because of the ICJ, but because of who we are and the values we stand for.”

US Silence

The US, a staunch supporter of Israel, did not directly comment on the ICJ ruling. However, the White House National Security Council spokesperson said: “We’ve been clear and consistent on our position on Rafah.”

Furthermore, the US Republic senator Lindsey Graham described the UN top court decision as “ridiculous.”

Europe’s Position

The European Union’s foreign affairs chief, Josep Borrell, said that the EU faces a difficult choice after the World Court ruling.

Speaking during a European University Institute (EUI) event in Florence, he said: “What is going to be the (EU’s) answer to the ruling of the International Court of Justice that has been issued today, what is going to be our position? We will have to choose between our support to international institutions of the rule of law or our support to Israel.”

ICJ Ruling: How the World Reacted to the Historic Decision?
Josep Borrell

Belgium expressed its support for the ICJ decision. Belgian Foreign Minister Hadja Lahbib said: “The ICJ orders Israel to stop its military offensive in Rafah. (Belgium) calls for immediate implementation of the decision. The violence and human suffering in Gaza must stop. We call for a ceasefire, the release of the hostages and negotiations for two States.”

Commenting on the ruling, Norwegian Foreign Minister Espen Barth Eide said: “I expect Israel to carry out the measures that have been ordered. Respect for the court and its functions, including the authority to order interim measures, is essential to strengthening international law and the international legal order.”

South Africa and Turkey

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa welcomed the ICJ order, but he raised concern over the restriction of humanitarian aid to Gaza. He said: “South Africa remains concerned that the United Nations Security Council has so far not succeeded in stopping the human suffering.”

Welcoming the ICJ decision, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said: “No country in the world is above the law. We expect all decisions taken by the Court to be quickly implemented by Israel. To ensure this, we invite the UN Security Council to do its part.”

Canada’s Stance

Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that Israel must stop its military operations in Rafah after the ICJ ruling.

He told reporters on Friday: “There also must be no more military operations in Rafah by Israel, and certainly no escalation of military operations in Rafah. The ICJ’s proposals are binding and we expect everyone to follow them as a matter of international law.”

Short link :

Related Stories

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button