South Africa tells UN court to prosecute Israel for genocide

Israel’s Foreign Ministry ‘rejects with disgust the blood libel spread by South Africa.’

By Vered Weiss, World Israel News

South Africa’s DIRCO (Department of International Relations and Cooperation) on Friday filed an application with the ICJ (International Court of Justice) to prosecute Israel for alleged genocide during the Israel-Hamas war, as reported by Reuters.

The DIRCO statement said, “Israel, since 7 October 2023 in particular, has failed to prevent genocide and has failed to prosecute the direct and public incitement to genocide.”

DIRCO added that Israel violated the Genocide Convention, an agreement established in 1948 in the wake of the Holocaust to prevent the intentional destruction of a whole or a significant part of a people.

South Africa requested the court to force Israel to halt its military campaign in Gaza, a move which was “necessary in this case to protect against further, severe and irreparable harm to the rights of the Palestinian people.”

Although the ICJ in The Hague is regarded as the UN’s highest court, its rulings are not always heeded, as in the court order to Russia in 2022 to halt its military campaign in Ukraine.

Israel’s foreign minister dismissed DIRCO’s request as “baseless” and says it “rejects with disgust the blood libel spread by South Africa in its application to the International Court of Justice (ICJ).”

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Israel’s foreign ministry said South Africa’s claim was a “despicable and contemptuous exploitation of the Court,” and said it was “cooperating with a terrorist organization that is calling for the destruction of the State of Israel.”

The minister elaborated that Hamas, not Israel, was responsible for war crimes for its attacks on Israelis during the October 7th massacre and for using its own people as human shields and stealing humanitarian aid from them.

“Israel is committed to international law and acts in accordance with it, and directs its military efforts solely against the Hamas terrorist organization and the other terrorist organizations cooperating with Hamas,” the Foreign Ministry statement has said.

South Africa has taken a staunchly anti-Israel position and its ministers have often made the comparison between their own history of apartheid with the fight of the Palestinians against Israelis.

Last month, South African politicians voted on closing down the Israeli embassy in Pretoria and suspending diplomatic relations with Israel.