United Nations Court Orders Israel To Open Additional Land Crossings for Gaza Aid

On March 28, 2024, the leading United Nations court instructed Israel to implement measures to improve the humanitarian situation in Gaza, which includes opening additional land crossings to let food, water, fuel and other supplies into the war-torn city.

The International Court of Justice issued two new provisional measures in a case put forward by South Africa, who accused Israel of carrying out a genocide in Gaza as part of the military campaign it launched against Hamas’ attack on Israel on October 7. Israel rejects allegations that it is committing genocide. It claims that its military campaign is being carried out in self defense and directed at Hamas, not the Palestinian people.

March 28’s order came following South Africa’s decision to  pursue additional provisional measures, such as a ceasefire, alluding to the starvation taking place in Gaza. Israel called on the court to not issue additional orders.

In the order, which is legally binding, the court instructed Israel to implement measures “without delay” to guarantee “the unhindered provision” of basic services and humanitarian aid, which includes food, water, fuel, and medical supplies.

The court also instructed Israeli authorities to immediately guarantee that its military not pursue actions that could that could violate Palestinians’ rights under the Genocide Convention. One type of action that would be deemed illegal is the prevention of the delivery of humanitarian aid.

The court asked Israel to publish a report highlighting its compliance with these orders within a month.

Israel launched a military campaign as a response to a brutal attack by Hamas on October 7 in which 1,200 people were slaughtered and 250 others were taken hostage. Israel launched a campaign of airstrikes and a ground offensive that resulted in the deaths of over 32,000 Palestinians dead, per local health authorities. The fighting has also displaced north of 80% of Gaza’s population. 

The UN is an institution that should not be trusted. But it should be commended for its attempts to bring this conflict to a peaceful conclusion. The reality, though, is that the most effective way to end the Hamas-Israel conflict is for the US to withdraw all military aid and stop blindly taking Israel’s side. 

Neutrality and non-intervention are the only proper solutions to this conflict.

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