UNSC to discuss ICJ’s ruling on Israel

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The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) will this week discuss the International Court of Justice’s (ICJ) ruling calling on Israel to prevent acts of genocide in Gaza.  The interim order requires Israel to take provisional measures to prevent acts of genocide and ensure humanitarian access to the population of Gaza.

South Africa brought the case to the world court earlier in the month. Pretoria says it is happy with the ruling.

However, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has rejected the ruling saying Israel will continue to defend itself, while adhering to international law.

There was jubilation after the ruling where African National Congress National Executive Committee members were gathering. Now the big challenge is how the ruling will be enforced.

Minister of Justice and Correctional Services Ronald Lamola says there is a huge consensus around the world with the International Court of Justice ruling.

“In our view, our prayers were responded to by the court and the court has granted us what we have requested. So, we have achieved and the commentators across the globe, there is consensus even by international relations experts.”

The issue will now dominate discussions in the United Nations Security Council later this week, as the countries grapple with a way forward. The ruling is continuing to draw mixed reactions.

Natasha Hausdorff is a lawyer from the UK.

“It is important to make distinction between the general allegations of the international law unfounded as they are and the specific allegations of genocide.”

Human rights activist Professor Thuli Madonsela from the Centre for Social Justice and Law at Stellenbosch University, says there is a misinterpretation of the judgment.

“The judgment is a victory not for South Africa or Palestinians or Israelis, it is for all human beings who love peace, who believe in shared humanity and who respect international law. One of the observations are, the ICJ who said Israel for many years has been ignoring resolutions of the United Nations.”

UN Chief Antonio Guterres is expected to make an announcement on the way forward.

Meanwhile, Israeli Defense Forces continue operations against Hamas in Gaza.