DEFENCE AND RESPONSE
Visiting Professor at University of Minnesota’s Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies Melanie O’Brien believes that South Africa has a strong argument in their case against Israel. She stated that it is likely the International Court of Justice (ICJ) will order some sort of measure for Israel to comply with. O’Brien spoke with CNA’s Asia First on Thursday, highlighting the complexity of the case and the need to prove intent to commit genocide.
O’Brien explained, “There’s a lot of discussion amongst lawyers at the moment about, particularly, the need to prove genocide.” She further added, “In this case, South Africa is arguing that Israel has an intent to destroy Palestinians, or at least a substantial part of the Palestinian population. And that’s really difficult to prove.”
The ICJ’s decision on provisional measures is expected in a matter of weeks, but the enforcement of these measures will be up to the United Nations Security Council, where the United States holds veto power. O’Brien noted the US’s support of Israel and their ability to block any enforcement action by the Security Council.
She also highlighted that even if the ICJ orders measures, it does not guarantee an immediate cessation of Israeli military action. The US’s recent veto of a UN resolution demanding a humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza demonstrates their unwavering support for Israel.
Overall, the situation is complex and the outcome remains uncertain, but O’Brien’s insights shed light on the legal and political implications surrounding the case.