Turkey has become the second country to endorse South Africa’s application to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) against Israel’s continuous bombardment of Palestine which has sparked international outcry.
This past week, the government of South Africa, filed an application instituting proceedings against Israel for alleged violation of the Genocide Conventions in relation to the war on Palestinians in the Gaza Strip,where more than 22 000 people, most of them children and women, have reportedly died as a result of Israel’s retaliatory ongoing bombings following the October 7, 2023, attack by the militant group Hamas.
On Wednesday, following a similar stance by the state of Malaysia, the government of Turkey declared its support for South Africa’s application to the ICJ against Israeli actions in Palestine.
“We welcome the application of the Republic of South Africa to ICJ against Israel regarding the violation of the obligations under the 1948 Convention on Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide. Israel’s murder of 22 000 Palestinian civilians, the majority of whom were women and children, for nearly three months should not go unpunished in any way, and those responsible for this must be held accountable before international law,” the Turkish foreign ministry said in a statement.
It is expected that within the framework of this application, the ICJ will decide on provisional measures to stop Israel’s attacks on Gaza.
This week, following the announcement by e Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) that its application to the ICJ was scheduled for a hearing next Thursday, January 11, the State of Israel announced that it would present its case refuting SA’s claims and allegations against it.
According to Independent Media, in a live briefing, Israeli Government spokesperson, Eylon Levy, said that Israel “emphatically condemns South Africa’s decision to play advocate for the devil.”
“On October 7, Hamas perpetrated an act of genocide on Israeli soil. Death squads executed a campaign of systematic extermination with a clear mission to murder as many Israelis as possible and as sadistically as possible. It was an act of genocide perpetrated with Nazi-like cruelty and Nazi-like efficiency in service of a Nazi-like ideology... On October 7 South Africa aligned itself with the Hamas regime when it blamed Israel for violation of a ceasefire and covered up Hamas crimes against humanity. It is now aiding and abetting this machinery of genocide,” Levy said.
While Israel and the US have condemned South Africa for its application, the South African Jews for a Free Palestine has welcomed the decision by the South African Government to invoke the 1948 Genocide Convention and institute proceedings against the State of Israel at the ICJ.
“South African Jews for a Free Palestine (SAJFP) wholeheartedly welcomes South Africa’s submission to the ICJ as part of a set of tactics towards justice in the pursuit of a free Palestine and the absolute ending of the genocide in Gaza,” SAJFP said in a statement.
The SAJFP said the genocide in Gaza had its roots in the ongoing, “Nakba that marked the establishment of the apartheid Zionist settler colony of Israel in 1948 in continuity with the establishment of the Apartheid State in South Africa in the same year.
“The year 1948 was also the year in which the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide, or the Genocide Convention – on which grounds South Africa has made its submission to the ICJ – was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly.
“Thinking together about these connected apartheids and legal architectures from our vantage point as Jewish South Africans, we express our absolute condemnation of the genocide in Palestine and of the violent vandalisation of our Jewish faith as it has been manipulated to support apartheid and settler colonial genocide in Palestine and globally through the conflation of Judaism and Zionism and anti-semitism and anti-Zionism. This conflation is a historical, inaccurate, racist, and dangerous,“ SAJFP added.