South Africa launches ‘urgent request’ to UN court over Israel’s military operations in Rafah

South Africa has lodged an “urgent request” with the UN court over Israel’s military operations in Rafah in the Gaza Strip.

The country is asking the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to consider if Israel’s actions in the southern city are a breach of the provisional orders it handed down in the genocide case last month.

In the preliminary ruling Israel was told it must do all it can to prevent the deaths of Palestinian civilians. Since then Israel has indicated that it would launch a ground offensive in Rafah – where 1.4 million Palestinians have fled to escape fighting.

South Africa is asking the court if Israel’s intended offensive represents a “further imminent breach of the rights of Palestinians in Gaza”.

Earlier on Tuesday, officials said Israel and Hamas are making progress towards a deal that aims to bring about a ceasefire and free hostages held in the war-ravaged Gaza Strip as key meetings continue between the sides in the Egyptian capital.

Talks are moving forward even after Israel intensified its offensive Rafah. A brazen Israeli hostage rescue mission freed two captives held in the town along the Egyptian border, a raid that killed at least 74 Palestinians, according to local health officials, and left a trail of destruction.

This is breaking news story, more to follow

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