ICJ orders Israel to take measures to prevent acts of genocide in Gaza

The International Court of Justice (ICJ) on Friday ordered Israel to take measures to prevent acts of genocide in Gaza as it handed down a landmark ruling in a case brought by South Africa.

Israel must take "immediate and effective measures to enable the provision of urgently needed basic services and humanitarian assistance to address the adverse conditions of life faced by Palestinians," the top UN court ruled.

However the court's 17 judges did not impose a ceasefire as had been sought by South Africa.

“The court is acutely aware of the extent of the human tragedy that is unfolding in the region and is deeply concerned about the continuing loss of life and human suffering,” Joan E. Donoghue, the court’s president, said.

Cheers and applause

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa and the council of South Africa's ruling party erupted into cheers as the much-awaited decision was announced from The Hague.

The African National Congress national executive committee suspended a meeting to watch a broadcast from the court, with live footage showing senior party and government figures celebrating.

The filing to the ICJ alleged that Israel “has engaged in, is engaging in and risks further engaging in genocidal acts against the Palestinian people in Gaza".

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