update deskIsrael at War

Nicaragua takes Berlin to UN court over support for ‘genocide’ in Gaza

Nicaragua asked the ICJ to order Berlin to immediately halt all military assistance to Israel and reverse its decision to stop supporting UNRWA.

The International Court of Justice in The Hague. Source: Wikimedia Commons.
The International Court of Justice in The Hague. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

Nicaragua has filed an application at the International Court of Justice against Germany, accusing Berlin of being complicit in genocide by supporting Israel’s war against Hamas terrorists in the Gaza Strip, The Hague-based court announced over the weekend.

“By sending military equipment and now defunding UNRWA which provides essential support to the civilian population, Germany is facilitating the commission of genocide,” Nicaragua claimed.

According to Managua’s legal filing, the German government’s actions violate the 1948 Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide and the 1949 Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War.

Nicaragua asked the International Court of Justice, “as a matter of extreme urgency,” to issue provisional measures requiring Berlin to immediately halt all military assistance to Israel and reverse its decision to stop supporting UNRWA.

At least 30 UNRWA employees actively participated in Hamas’s Oct. 7 massacre, during which the terrorist group killed some 1,200 people, mostly civilians, and abducted some 250 others to Gaza. In addition, according to Israeli intelligence sources, almost 1,500 of UNRWA’s 13,000 staff members in Gaza the Strip are members of Hamas or Islamic Jihad.

The revelations led more than a dozen countries to suspend funding, including Germany, UNRWA’s second-biggest donor after the U.S. In 2022, Berlin contributed more than €190 million ($206 million) to UNRWA.

German arms exports to the Jewish state reached €326.5 million ($354 million) last year, a tenfold increase from 2022. The majority of export permits were issued after Oct. 7, Reuters said.

Nicaragua, which has been ruled since 2007 by hard-left President Daniel Ortega, whom many accuse of being an overtly authoritarian ruler, has in recent years strengthened its diplomatic ties with the Islamic Republic of Iran.

Nicaragua’s case builds on the charges South Africa brought against Israel at the International Court of Justice earlier this year for allegedly committing genocide against Palestinians in Gaza.

On Jan. 26, the ICJ rejected a request from Pretoria to order a halt to the war against Hamas. In its provisional ruling, the court insisted that the Jewish state take all necessary means to prevent actions that could lead to genocide, and it dismissed South Africa’s demand that residents of northern Gaza be allowed to return to the area immediately.

The court ordered Jerusalem to “take all measures within its power” to prevent the commission of genocide against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, to ensure that Israel Defense Forces troops do not commit acts of genocide and to punish alleged public incitement to genocide.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded by saying that the court “rightly rejected the outrageous demand to deny” the Jewish state the right to defend itself against terrorism.

“The very claim that Israel is committing genocide against Palestinians is not just false, it is outrageous, and the court’s willingness to discuss it at all is a mark of disgrace that will not be erased for generations,” Netanyahu said.

The ICJ is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations. Its seat is in The Hague, the Netherlands. The ICJ deals with disputes between states, whereas the International Criminal Court prosecutes individuals.

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