Gaza: Genocide Convention

Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office written question – answered at on 12 February 2024.

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Photo of Alan Brown Alan Brown Scottish National Party, Kilmarnock and Loudoun

To ask the Minister of State, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, if he will take steps to help ensure the Israeli government's compliance with the provisional measures set forth by the International Court of Justice 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).

Photo of Andrew Mitchell Andrew Mitchell Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development), Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office) (Minister for Development and Africa)

FCDO Ministers hold regular meetings with their counterparts, including the Foreign Secretary's meetings with the Israeli Prime Minister and Foreign Minister during his visit to Israel on 24 January.

We respect the role and independence of the International Court of Justice (ICJ). The ICJ's ruling is binding.

We respect the role and independence of the ICJ. However, we have stated that we have considerable concerns about this case, which is not helpful in the goal of achieving a sustainable ceasefire. Israel has the right to defend itself against Hamas in line with International Law, as we have said from the outset. Our view is that Israel's actions in Gaza cannot be described as a genocide, which is why we thought South Africa's decision to bring the case was wrong and provocative.

The court's call for the immediate release of hostages and the need to get more aid into Gaza is a position we have long advocated.

We are clear that an immediate pause is necessary to get aid in and hostages out, and then we want to build towards a sustainable, permanent ceasefire, without a return to the fighting.

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