World Court Rejects Emergency Measures Over German Arms Exports to Israel

World Court Rejects Emergency Measures Over German Arms Exports to Israel

THE HAGUE – Judges at the International Court of Justice on Tuesday ruled against issuing emergency orders to stop German arms exports to Israel, while expressing deep concern about “catastrophic living conditions in Gaza”.

But the court also rejected a German request to throw out the case, so it can now move forward.

Nicaragua had asked the ICJ, also known as the World Court, to order Germany to halt military arms exports to Israel and to resume its funding of the U.N. Palestinian refugee agency UNRWA, saying there was a serious risk of genocide in Gaza.

The court refused to issue any orders, saying that the current circumstances presented by Nicaragua were not such that the court needed to issue emergency measures.

The presiding judge, Nawaf Salam, added: “The court remains deeply concerned about the catastrophic living conditions of the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, in particular, in view of the prolonged and widespread deprivation of food and other basic necessities to which they have been subjected.”

Nicaragua accuses Berlin of violating international humanitarian law and the 1948 Genocide Convention by continuing to supply Israel with arms after ICJ judges ruled in January that it was plausible Israel violated some rights guaranteed under the genocide convention during its assault on Gaza.

That main case will move forward, and the next step will be a chance for Germany to raise a preliminary objection to the court’s jurisdiction.

Pro-Palestinian protesters outside the ICJ expressed disappointment over Tuesday’s verdict.

“I’m really scared that this is going to have consequences for other European states and other nations worldwide. They still supply weapons to Israel,” Melanie Uittenbosch said.


Germany’s representative at the ICJ welcomed the ruling.

“We are complying with international law and we will continue to do so in the future,” Tania von Uslar-Gleichen told journalists.

It will likely take years before the ICJ reaches a final judgment in the case. The court has no way to enforce its rulings.

Separately, a spokesman for Berlin’s Administrative Court confirmed on Tuesday that it had asked the German government to explain the criteria whereby arms are supplied to Israel without violating international law. That move came after human rights groups challenged German export permits in court.

Israel strongly denies the genocide accusations. It launched its current military campaign in Gaza with the aim of destroying Hamas, the Palestinian militant group that attacked southern Israel on Oct. 7, killing some 1,200 people and taking 253 hostages, according to Israeli tallies.

More than 34,000 Palestinians have been killed during the Israeli campaign in Gaza, according to health authorities there, and the tiny enclave has largely been reduced to rubble.

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