ZFA statement on the ICJ’s preliminary finding

Official Statements

The Zionist Federation of Australia denounces South Africa’s reprehensible conduct at the International Court of Justice and welcomes the fact that the ICJ has effectively dismissed South Africa’s demand that Israel be prohibited from defending its own people and has called on Hamas to immediately release all remaining Israeli hostages.

ZFA President Jeremy Leibler said, “It is reassuring to witness the failure of South Africa’s egregious and cynical attempt to exploit the Genocide Convention in order to halt Israel’s legitimate right to defend itself and prevent Hamas’ capacity from pursuing its stated genocidal objectives against the State of Israel and the Jewish people”.

Mr Leibler continued, “Had South Africa’s efforts prevailed, it would have not only empowered Hamas but also set a dangerous precedent, encouraging other terrorist organisations globally to follow suit, thereby eroding the foundational principle of self-defence under international law”.

Mr Leibler concluded, “We welcomed Foreign Minister Penny Wong’s statement that she does not accept the premise of the South African case. We strongly believe that, in order to uphold the international rules-based order, Australia should make a third-party intervention in this case, urging the ICJ to dismiss these allegations. We call on the Government to do so.”

ZFA CEO Alon Cassuto said, “While we applaud the ICJ’s demand for the immediate and unconditional release of Israeli hostages in Gaza, we entirely reject the ICJ’s suggestion that there is a ‘plausible’ accusation against Israel. This acknowledgement overlooks the substantial and transparent counterarguments presented by Israeli representatives, which clearly outline Israel’s strict adherence to minimising civilian casualties and the deceptive and illegal strategies employed by Hamas, including the use of human shields”.

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