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Members of the German delegation participated in a hearing at the International Court of Justice in The Hague in early…Robin Van Ronkhuysen/EPA via Shutterstock

The International Court of Justice will rule on Tuesday on whether countries that provide military aid to Israel bear certain responsibility for how their weapons are used, as the Hague tribunal once again becomes the focus of global efforts to curb the war in Gaza. It is planned. .

Judges are expected to issue a preliminary ruling in a lawsuit filed by Nicaragua against Germany. Nicaragua asked the UN’s highest court, the ICJ, to issue an emergency order for Germany to stop supplying weapons to Israel and to prevent the illegal use of weapons already supplied.

The court’s answers will have implications for Israel’s allies in Europe and the United States, including whether arms suppliers will be considered complicit or even liable if aid is used to enable serious war crimes. It has the potential to answer larger questions.

Appearing before a judge in early April, Nicaragua, a long-time supporter of the Palestinian cause, accused Germany of not only failing in its obligation to avert genocide against Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, but also committing crimes by providing military aid. He told the court that he was promoting this. Germany is Israel’s staunch ally and second largest supplier of weapons after the United States.

Both Germany and Nicaragua are parties to the 1948 Genocide Convention, which mandates action to prevent genocide. Genocide is defined as “the intent to destroy a group of people by inflicting calculated living conditions,” as well as killing or inflicting serious physical or mental harm. causing physical destruction in whole or in part; ”

Israel has repeatedly denied accusations that it is committing genocide in the Gaza Strip, saying its military is trying to keep civilians on life support and that Hamas is using civilians as human shields.

In January, the ICJ issued another interim order requested by South Africa, stating that Israel must prevent its forces in the Gaza Strip from taking actions prohibited by the Genocide Convention and that It clearly states that such statements must be prevented and punished, and that further acts must be tolerated. Access to humanitarian aid. The court is expected to take at least two years to rule on the question of whether Israel committed genocide but found there was a “plausible” risk of genocide.

Germany strongly rejects claims that military exports to Israel violate international law, insisting that exports have always been permitted under German and European rules.

Nicaragua’s claims against Germany are broader than South Africa’s claims against Israel. Nicaragua claims that Germany’s arms supplies not only risk promoting genocide, but also contribute to violations of the Geneva Conventions, including the obligation to protect civilians during military hostilities.

Unlike Germany, which has given full jurisdiction to its courts, the United States will have to defend itself and agree to litigation on most issues. The country further protects itself from the Genocide Convention, signing the treaty but exempting it from obligations such as intervening to stop genocide or paying reparations if it is found to have colluded.

Critics of the Nicaraguan government say it is hypocritical to go after Germany for violating international law. Recent UN Reports It accused Nicaragua of “systematic human rights violations” and increased repression of government opponents in the country.

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