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Top UN court plans hearings on South Africa’s request for additional measures amid Israeli attacks

Top UN court plans hearings on South Africa’s request for additional measures amid Israeli attacks

Hearings scheduled for May 16-17 after South Africa said previous provisional measures 'not capable of fully addressing changed circumstances, news facts'

By Nur Asena Erturk
 
 

ANKARA (AA) - The International Court of Justice (ICJ) will hold public hearings on May 16-17 following South Africa’s request for additional measures amid Israel’s attacks on Gaza and Rafah.

The UN’s top court based in the Dutch city of The Hague said in a statement that the South African delegation will be heard on Thursday, and the Israeli side on Friday.

South Africa on May 10 filed an “urgent request” with the ICJ for additional measures amid Israel’s attacks on Gaza, particularly in the city of Rafah, where more than 1.4 million Palestinians are taking shelter.

The previous provisional measures “are not capable of fully addressing the changed circumstances and news facts,” the ICJ said on Friday, three days after the Israeli army stormed and occupied the Palestinian side of the Rafah crossing with Egypt, closing Gazan Palestinians' only gateway to the world.

“(The) situation brought about by the Israeli assault on Rafah, and the extreme risk it poses to humanitarian supplies and basic services into Gaza, to the survival of the Palestinian medical system, and to the very survival of Palestinians in Gaza as a group, is not only an escalation of the prevailing situation, but gives rise to new facts that are causing irreparable harm to the rights of the Palestinian people in Gaza,” South Africa said in its request, according to the ICJ.

South Africa took Israel to the International Court of Justice in late 2023, accusing it of genocide in Gaza.

An interim ruling in January said it is "plausible" that Tel Aviv is committing genocide in the coastal enclave, and ordered Tel Aviv to stop such acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

Israel has pounded the Gaza Strip in retaliation for an Oct. 7 attack by Hamas which killed about 1,200 people.

More than 35,100 Palestinians have since been killed in Gaza, mostly women and children, and over 79,000 others injured, according to Palestinian health authorities.

Over seven months into the Israeli war, vast swathes of Gaza lay in ruins, pushing 85% of the enclave’s population into internal displacement amid a crippling blockade of food, clean water, and medicine, according to the UN.

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