International Coalition to Stop Genocide in Palestine welcomes ICJ order, demands its implementation

South-African-President-Cyril-Ramaphosa-I-have-never-felt-so-proud-Gaza-genocide-case-argued-at-ICJ, International Coalition to Stop Genocide in Palestine welcomes ICJ order, demands its implementation, World News & Views
“When our lawyers were defending our case in The Hague (headquarters of the International Court of Justice (ICJ), also known as the World Court), when I saw Ronald Lamola, a son of this land, presenting our case in court, I have never felt as proud as I do today,” South African President Cyril Ramaphosa told the Women’s League of the African National Congress (ANC), adding: “Some people say that the step we are taking is risky. We are a small country, and we have a small economy. They can attack us, but we will stand by our principles. As the father of our democracy taught us, we will not be truly free until the Palestinian people are free.” – Photo: Palestinian Information Center

by Black Alliance For Peace

In its provisional ruling issued Jan. 26 on the South African Genocide Convention case against Israel, the International Court of Justice (ICJ, also known as the World Court) demanded Israel stop killing civilians and destroying civilian infrastructure and medical facilities, prevent and punish incitement to genocide by its top officials and permit the delivery of humanitarian aid to Gaza. The International Coalition to Stop Genocide in Palestine (ICSGP) applauds the Court’s Order as a crucial first step toward forcing Israel and its primary sponsor and strongest political ally – the United States – to end the months-long brutal assault on Gaza and the decades-long denial to Palestinians of their rights to self-determination and return. 

However, the ICSGP also recognizes that Israeli and U.S. government officials have made repeated official declarations in the past week making clear their plan to ignore the ICJ’s legally binding ruling and rejecting the Court’s process as illegitimate, and that the U.S. has been threatening world governments with sanctions and war – a promise it is making good on already by bombing Yemen – for opposing the ongoing genocide. The ICSGP also recognizes that numerous powerful state allies of the U.S. and Israel, including Germany and Canada, have already made clear their intent to back Israel against an ICJ finding of genocide. 

The dangerous rejection by the United States, Israel and their allies of this process – which was set up through the United Nations precisely to prevent genocide – undermines the legitimacy of that institution and in particular the U.N. Security Council, where the U.S. has long used its veto power as a tool to promote war and genocide. The ICSGP calls upon social movements to demand that world governments uphold international law and protect the integrity of the United Nations by ensuring that the ICJ’s provisional measures are immediately enforced, and to hold Israeli war criminals and their powerful U.S. accomplices accountable for genocide.

International-Court-of-Justice-hears-South-Africa-v.-Israel-012624-by-UN, International Coalition to Stop Genocide in Palestine welcomes ICJ order, demands its implementation, World News & Views
The International Court of Justice, the highest court in the world, listened to arguments by South Africa that Israel is committing genocide in Gaza. “We, as South Africans, will not be passive bystanders and watch the crimes that were visited upon us being perpetrated elsewhere,” Ramaphosa said in an address to the nation. – Photo: UN

The ICSGP stands in full solidarity with its Palestinian coalition members, who have emphasized in their own statements today the need for governments and social movements around the world to double down in their efforts to bring the ongoing genocide in Gaza to an end. Dr. Luqa AbuFarah, North America coordinator for the Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC), an ICSGP member organization, states:

“It’s clear we have a moral obligation to take action and end our government’s complicity with Israel’s Gaza genocide. We must have the courage to speak out and take action to advance the struggle for justice. We must end US military funding to Israel, which at $3.8 billion USD a year could instead provide more than 450,000 households with public housing for a year or pay for 41,490 elementary school teachers. I also hope that every person outraged with the blatant disregard for Palestinian life will join and escalate our BDS campaigns and make sure companies know that complicity with Israeli apartheid and genocide is unacceptable. We must take action now more than ever!”

ICSGP, together with numerous legal and human rights organizations including coalition members The PAL Commission on War Crimes and The Global Legal Alliance for Palestine, held press conferences in New York and Chicago following the Court’s Order on the request for the indication of provisional measures this morning, expressing gratitude to South Africa for its steadfast support and calling on all organizations and countries to support South Africa’s legal actions against the Israeli military campaign.

Lamis Deek, cofounder the PAL Commission on War Crimes and convener of the Global Legal Alliance for Palestine, states:

“This historic decision changes international and domestic approaches – military, legal and political – to stopping the genocide in Palestine. This verdict profoundly reshapes the geopolitical and legal topography, regardless of whether Israel complies or not. Following the Court’s decision we must issue calls on state parties to the ICJ and the Genocide Convention as regards their compliance obligations, and address our legal colleagues and our communities regarding the next steps we think will be most critical on the heels of this decision.

“The brutal Israeli genocide and torture in Gaza, alongside the targeted assassinations, destruction of civilian infrastructure including all of Gaza’s hospitals and universities, blocking of aid, and use of starvation and spread of disease as a war tactic, constitute a grotesque series of the highest war crimes. We commend the Court’s positive decision. The question now is how to deal with the anticipated US-Israeli obstruction of that decision.”

Monisha Rios, president of SOLI PR, an international network of Puerto Ricans focused on growing solidarity with the Puerto Rican struggle for independence and ICSGP member organization, states: 

“As Puerto Ricans directly involved in the struggle against U.S.-led settler colonial violence, land grabs and the ongoing neoliberal assault, we have a special obligation to stand in firm, unwavering solidarity with our Palestinian cousins. Not only does the Zionist entity’s genocidal regime in Palestine owe its existence as such to U.S. financial and political backing since its inception, Israel has also directly contributed with military technologies, weapons and police training to the violent repression of peoples fighting for self-determination against the U.S. and its puppet regimes around the world, and of Indigenous Peoples and descendants of enslaved African Peoples subject to structural apartheid within the continental United States. Israeli Zionists themselves have recognized the parallels between Palestine and Puerto Rico, for example with the Minister of Heritage – who publicly called for using a nuclear bomb in Gaza – recently calling for a “Puerto Rican” solution to Palestine. The South African Case at the World Court and the Court’s decision this morning provide Puerto Ricans and colonized peoples around the world a unique opportunity – in recognizing our common struggle and joining together to fight against Zionist fascism, we have tremendous power to both stop the ongoing genocide against Palestinians and to contribute to our own liberation by shifting the balance of global power away from the U.S. and toward the Global South.”

The ICSGP calls upon the over 2,000 organizational signatories to its original letter, and to social movements everywhere, to hold the profiteers and promoters of the Zionist genocide to account through concrete actions of boycott, divestment and sanctions; to mobilize to demand the immediate enforcement of the ICJ’s Order of Provisional Measures and denounce accomplices to the genocide and to continue to pressure all state parties to the Genocide Convention to issue Declarations of Intervention in support of the South African case at the ICJ.

This statement was originally published in Black Alliance for Peace, a leading member of the International Coalition to Stop Genocide in Palestine (ICSGP), formed to support the charge of genocide against Israel at the International Court of Justice. The ICGSP encourages governments and global social movements to demand that provisional measures are enforced immediately. Previous ICSGP press statements are available from Jan. 17 , Jan. 8 and Jan. 3 , 2024.