Rafah op. doesn't contradict ICJ ruling, we will continue, Israel says

    WORLD  25 May 2024 - 14:04

    The IDF intends to push on with its military operation in Rafah to defeat Hamas, Minister-without-portfolio Benny Gantz told US Secretary of State Antony Blinken on May 24, after the International Court of Justice’s demand that it halt any campaign in that area to destroy the Palestinian people.

    “The State of Israel is committed to continue fighting to return its hostages and promise the security of its citizens - wherever and whenever necessary - including in Rafah,” Gantz said in a statement he issued late Friday after the ICJ ruling, according to the Jerusalem Post.

    Gantz is both a former Defense Minister and IDF Chief-of-Staff and is a member of Israel’s small war cabinet. Both in his statement to the public and in his conversation with Blinken he stressed the importance of continuing the campaign to defeat Hamas and to ensure the return of the remaining 125 hostages kidnapped on October 7 and held in Gaza.

    The National Security Council and the Foreign Ministry also stressed Israel's intention to continue with its Rafah operation, noting that the military campaign was designed to target Hamas, not Palestinian civilians.

    It noted that the order issued by the ICJ, in which it stated that Israel must “halt its military offensive and any other actions in the Rafah Governate, which may inflict on the Palestinian group in Gaza conditions of life that could bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part.”

    The Israeli declaration said that the IDF has not and will not carry out military activity in the Rafah area that would destroy the Palestinian people, and was in compliance with international law.

    “Israel will continue its efforts to allow humanitarian aid to enter the Gaza Strip and act, in accordance with the law, to reduce as much as possible the damage to the civilian population in the Gaza Strip,” the declaration stated.

    “Israel will continue to keep the Rafah crossing open, allow continuous humanitarian aid to enter from the Egyptian side of the crossing, and prevent terrorist organizations from controlling the crossing.”

    Israel in its statement took issue with the larger context of the ICJ ruling, which was issued as the tribunal is adjudicating South Africa’s claim that it is committing genocide against the Palestinian people and is therefore in violation of the 1948 genocide convention.

    It stressed that “the accusations of South Africa against Israel at the ICJ in The Hague regarding "genocide" are false, outrageous and disgusting.”

    Caliber.Az

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