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15 Jan, 2024 15:00

Israel has no moral standing in Gaza – South African justice minister

Pretoria’s case is backed by international law and UN conventions, Ronald Lamola told RT
Israel has no moral standing in Gaza – South African justice minister

Israel has no moral standing in Gaza and cannot commit genocide in the name of self-defense, South African Justice Minister Ronald Lamola has told RT in an exclusive interview as Pretoria’s case continues before the International Court of Justice (ICJ).

Lamola, who is also a lawyer, said South Africa had presented a compelling case to the ICJ based on “meticulous arguments, evidence, and also backed by international law and conventions of the UN.”

He said Israel had “no moral standing” in Gaza, where they are “occupiers”, adding that nobody can “commit genocide in self-defense; it’s not backed by international law.”

“The victims must be able to stand up for their rights, and it is countries like South Africa and other people of the world who are signatories to the genocide convention,” Lamola said.

If South Africa does not win the case, “the struggle continues.” However, “irrespective of the outcome, we have been able to expose the hypocrisy of the powers that be in the world,” the justice minister added.

He argued that Israel and Hamas “should cease fire, sit at the table, [and] resolve dialogue in line with the UN resolutions.”

Pretoria expects that there will be an “immediate cessation of fire in Gaza, allowing humanitarian aid, and allowing engagements to continue to find long-lasting peaceful solutions for the people of Gaza… anchored on the UN resolution on a two-state solution,” Lamola said.

He added that the world “will put pressure on Israel” to stop what’s happening and push for a two-state solution.

The ICJ began hearing South Africa’s application in The Hague on Thursday, which accuses Israel of genocide against Palestinians.