Above photo: Pro-Palestine demonstration outside the headquarters of the International Court of Justice in The Hague, Netherlands, January 26, 2024. AP.
The government of Nicaragua has filed a formal application with the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to join South Africa in its genocide case against “Israel.”
The ICJ announced in a press release on Thursday, February 8, that Nicaragua referred to Article 62 of the Statute of the Court to file in the Registry of the Court an application for permission to “intervene as a party in the case concerning Application of the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide in the Gaza Strip (South Africa v. Israel).”
In its filing, Nicaragua stated that it considers the conduct of Israel is in “violation of its obligations under the Genocide Convention” as it carries on its genocidal attack against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.
The ICJ reported that Nicaragua filed the request on January 23, where it stated that it “has interests of a legal nature that stem from the rights and obligations imposed by the Genocide Convention on all State Parties and flow from the universal character both of the condemnation of genocide and of the cooperation required in order to liberate mankind from such an odious scourge.”
In this filing, Nicaragua requested the ICJ “to adjudge and declare… that the State of Israel has breached and continues to breach its obligations under the Genocide Convention.”
It further requested the Court to ensure that “Israel must collect and conserve evidence and ensure, allow and/or not inhibit directly or indirectly the collection and conservation of evidence of genocidal acts committed against Palestinians in Gaza, including such members of the group displaced from Gaza.”
In addition, Nicaragua asked the ICJ to declare that Israel “must perform the obligations of reparation in the interest of Palestinian victims, including but not limited to allowing the safe and dignified return of forcibly displaced and/or abducted Palestinians to their homes, respect for their full human rights and protection against further discrimination, persecution, and other related acts, and provide for the reconstruction of what it has destroyed in Gaza,” and “offer assurances and guarantees of non-repetition of violations of the Genocide Convention.”
South Africa and Israel have been invited by the ICJ to furnish written observations on Nicaragua’s application for permission to intervene as a party.
On January 27, the ICJ ordered Israel to take all necessary measures to prevent genocide in the Gaza Strip, and to urgently allow humanitarian assistance in the region. The UN court also demanded that Israel prevent and punish cases of direct incitement to genocide in the Strip.
The then president of the Court, Joan Donoghue, ruled that Israel must report within a month on the actions it is taking to comply with the court decision.
The ruling came after South Africa filed a lawsuit against Israel on December 29, 2023 for violating the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide in the Gaza Strip.
Although the South African filing had asked for the ICJ to declare ceasefire in the Gaza Strip, the court refrained from calling for a ceasefire. However, it satisfied the other demands of South Africa in granting provisional measures on the case.
According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 27,947 Palestinians have been killed, and 67,317 wounded in Israel’s ongoing genocide in Gaza starting on October 7. At least 8,000 people are unaccounted for, presumed dead under the rubble of their homes throughout the Gaza Strip.
According to Palestinian and international estimates, the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children.