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ICJ Decision on Provisional Measures

The charge of genocide levelled against Israel at the International Court of Justice is false and outrageous. It constitutes a shameful exploitation of the Genocide Convention that is not only wholly unfounded in fact and law, but morally repugnant.

As the Court recognized, on October 7th Hamas and other terrorist groups committed unspeakable atrocities against Israel and its citizens. Like every country, Israel has an inherent and inalienable right to defend itself against the terrorist onslaught it still faces. The vile attempt by South Africa to deny Israel this fundamental right was justly rejected.

The Court has repeatedly made clear that its decision today does not determine whether South Africa’s claims have any merit, or the Court’s jurisdiction in this matter.

Israel remains committed, as it has repeatedly affirmed and demonstrated, to acting in accordance with its rights and obligations under international law, including international humanitarian law. This commitment is unwavering, independent of any ICJ proceedings.

Israel welcomes the Court’s clear demand for the immediate and unconditional release of all the hostages held in Gaza.

Israel’s war is against Hamas, not against Palestinian civilians. Israel will continue to facilitate humanitarian assistance, and to do its utmost according to the law to keep civilians out of harm’s way, even as Hamas uses them as human shields.

South Africa’s baseless accusations, and its attempt to empty the word genocide of its unique force and special meaning, have been widely denounced by numerous States known for their commitment to the rule of law. Israel is confident that the Court will likewise reject these unfounded claims at the merits phase of proceedings.

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On January 27th, International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Israel calls on all those genuinely committed to the solemn promise of “never again” enshrined in the Genocide Convention, to reject the unconscionable efforts to distort the truth in support of a genocidal terrorist organization. Hamas, and its sponsor in Tehran, seek to deny both Israelis and Palestinians the ability to achieve a peaceful future. South Africa should be denounced for being their willing accomplice.

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