ICJ orders Israel to cease Rafah offensive immediately

(MENAFN) In a significant ruling, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) directed Israel to halt its military campaign in Rafah without delay. Judge Nawaf Salam, serving as the court's leader, underscored the heightened urgency, noting a marked deterioration in humanitarian conditions since the previous rulings issued on January 26 and March 28.

Additionally, the ICJ called upon Israel to grant access to UN investigators for the purpose of probing genocide allegations and safeguarding potential evidence. The court further mandated that Israel furnish a comprehensive report detailing the implementation of its directives within a month.

The legal proceedings stemmed from a request lodged by South Africa on May 10, seeking ICJ intervention regarding Israel's compliance with the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide in the Gaza Strip. This case, initiated by South Africa on December 29, 2023, marked a pivotal moment in the ongoing legal saga.

Previous ICJ directives, issued on January 26 and March 28, compelled Israel to take proactive measures to prevent genocide, curtail incitement against Palestinians, and ensure the delivery of humanitarian aid. However, subsequent requests from South Africa in February and March 2024 prompted additional provisional measures, culminating in the ICJ's directive on March 28 to facilitate the unhindered flow of essential aid to Gaza.

Judge Salam's remarks during the recent ruling shed light on the dire circumstances in Rafah, where prolonged bombardments prompted mass evacuations, with over 800,000 individuals displaced by May 18. Given the evolving situation, the ICJ deemed it necessary to modify existing measures to adequately address the unfolding crisis.



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