ICJ Orders Israel to Take Action to Address Famine in Gaza

The Hague, MINA – In a landmark ruling, judges at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) have unanimously ordered Israel to take immediate and effective action to guarantee the delivery of basic food supplies to the beleaguered Palestinian population in Gaza, Wafa reports.

The ICJ issued its order on Thursday, citing the deteriorating conditions of life in Gaza, where famine and starvation are rapidly spreading as a result of the stifling Israeli blockade. The judges emphasized that Palestinians in Gaza are no longer merely at risk of famine but are already experiencing its dire consequences.

According to the ICJ order, at least 31 individuals, including 27 children, have tragically succumbed to malnutrition and dehydration, as reported by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

The court’s legally binding directive instructs Israel to undertake “all necessary and effective measures” to ensure the unhindered provision of urgently needed basic services and humanitarian assistance, including food, water, fuel, and medical supplies. This action is to be carried out in full cooperation with the United Nations.

Despite its authority, the ICJ lacks a mechanism to enforce its rulings.

These new measures stem from a request made by South Africa, which is pursuing a case accusing Israel of genocide in Gaza. In January, the ICJ had already ordered Israel to refrain from any actions that could constitute genocide under the Genocide Convention and to ensure that its troops do not commit genocidal acts against Palestinians in Gaza.

In Thursday’s ruling, the court reiterated the January measures and added a directive for Israel to facilitate the unimpeded provision of basic services and humanitarian aid to Palestinians across Gaza. The judges suggested increasing the capacity and number of land crossing points and keeping them open for as long as necessary.

Furthermore, Israel has been instructed to submit a report within a month outlining the steps taken to implement the court’s ruling.

On December 29, 2023, South Africa filed a lawsuit against Israel, the occupying power, over its involvement in “acts of genocide” against the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip. This lawsuit garnered support from dozens of countries, marking a historic precedent in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict.

South Africa presented a comprehensive 84-page dossier to the court, compiling evidence of Israel’s killing of thousands of Palestinians in Gaza and creating conditions “conducive to their physical destruction,” constituting the crime of “genocide” against them.

The court held public hearings on the case on January 11th and 12th, before issuing interim orders on January 26th. However, it may take years for a final judgment in the case.

Despite Israel’s failure to comply with the court’s orders, which are binding on member states, and its continued massacres in the Gaza Strip, this international and diplomatic momentum further isolates the Israeli occupation. (T/RE1/P2)

Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)