South Africa v. Israel Genocide Case: What You Should Know

( – The Hague recently took on a case against Israel, alleging it has conducted genocide against the Palestinian people. Officials in South Africa are attempting to end the bloodshed by suing the Jewish nation in the International Court of Justice, or the World Court. The preliminary hearings began on January 11.

The Embassy of the Republic of South Africa filed an 84-page Application instituting proceedings and Request for the indication of provisional measures on December 28, 2023. The document acknowledges and condemns the wrongdoing of Hamas and the brutal attack that triggered Israel’s declaration of war, but the petitioners say Israel went too far in its counterstrikes. They also allege that the Israeli government has long oppressed the Palestinian people, imposing conditions that make life in Gaza nearly uninhabitable and can only lead to its citizens’ destruction.

The Associated Press reports that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu slammed the charges against his country, insisting that Israel is fighting genocide, not causing it. He said the world has turned “upside-down” for such accusations to fly, especially coming from South Africa, where apartheid split people by race for generations and the record of crimes against humanity is both long and brutal.

The latest conflict between Israel and its Palestinian neighbors began on October 7, when Hamas terrorists stormed the nation from Gaza, killing 1,200 people, most of whom were civilians. In response, Israel forced a relentless counterattack that has reportedly killed 18,000 people, mostly women and children. Israel blames Hamas for the high casualties, stating it made Gaza’s residential areas targets by using them as cover to protect the terrorist group’s base of operations.

Axios reports that the case will likely drag on for years, and even if the court rules against Israel, it has no real power to enforce its decision. For reference, the World Court ordered Russia to cease its attacks on Ukraine in 2022, but the Kremlin ignored the demand without any repercussions.

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