Tuesday 14 May 2024 - 21:00

ICJ to Hold Hearings on Appeal for Israel's Rafah Attacks

Story Code : 1135112
ICJ to Hold Hearings on Appeal for Israel
Scheduled for May 16 and 17, the hearings will address South Africa's petition urging the court to mandate further emergency measures in response to Israel's offensive in Rafah, as announced by the tribunal.

This petition is a component of an ongoing legal dispute initiated by South Africa against Israel in January, accusing the commission of genocide against Palestinians in Gaza.

In a significant development, Egypt has formally requested to join the case against Israel, aligning with Turkey and Colombia's previous appeals to intervene.

According to senior officials within the Biden administration, the Israeli military has amassed sufficient troops on the outskirts of Rafah city, signaling a potential escalation to a full-scale invasion in the imminent future.

While preparations for a ground invasion are underway, uncertainty looms over Israel's intentions, especially in light of warnings issued by Biden regarding the withholding of arms shipments should such a move proceed, according to CNN.

Citing unnamed sources, CNN reports that Israel has yet to make adequate provisions for the evacuation of Rafah's civilian population, including essential infrastructure for food, hygiene, and shelter, casting doubts on the feasibility of an impending invasion.

Meanwhile, Palestinian communities in northern Gaza, particularly in the Jabalia refugee camp, are grappling with the dual threats of death and displacement as the Israeli military ramps up attacks across the besieged enclave.

Residents recount harrowing experiences of fleeing amid relentless attacks, with civilian infrastructure, including schools and shelters, becoming targets of the war.

“The tank is behind the classrooms in the schools,” Umm Jumma, a resident of the camp, told Al Jazeera. “We did not want to leave until we saw it with our own eyes.”

Another Palestinian in Jabalia told Al Jazeera that civilians are “running in the streets”.

“We’ve been displaced from one place to the next … we don’t know where to go,” she said.

According to the UN agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNRWA), the exodus from Rafah has swelled to nearly 450,000 since the Israeli military's mobilization near the city on May 6, exacerbating the humanitarian crisis and perpetuating a cycle of suffering and uncertainty.

The escalating Israeli violence has exacted a heavy toll on civilian lives, with the latest casualty update from the Palestinian Health Ministry reporting over 35,170 fatalities and 79,061 injuries since the onset of Israel's offensive on October 7. In the past 24 hours alone, 82 Palestinians were killed, while 234 sustained injuries.