Today, the International Court of Justice – the UN’s top law court for adjudicating between nations – ruled that “Israel must take all measures to prevent any acts that could be considered genocidal”.
This was not a ruling that Israel is already committing genocide – it was not within the court’s remit to judge on that today.
But the court did state that the acts that could be considered genocidal, which Israel must prevent, included the killing and bodily harm of Palestinians, inflicting conditions designed to bring about their destruction (for instance by denying them access to food and clean water), and imposing measures intended to prevent Palestinian births. The court also ruled that Israel must take measures to ensure humanitarian access for all those in need of aid.
The court may have not used the term itself, but it is clear to us – particularly as one of the charities that has been working so hard to give children in Gaza the aid they need - that there is only one way to for the court’s ruling to be realised. This is through an immediate ceasefire.
The UK and other influential governments must do everything in their power to ensure Israel complies with the ruling, and ends the killing of civilians, by bringing about a ceasefire.