Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vehemently rejected South Africa’s accusations of “genocidal” acts in the Gaza Strip, asserting Israel’s unmatched “morality” during the conflict. Speaking at a cabinet meeting in Tel Aviv, Netanyahu countered the claims, stating that Israel’s military actions were defensive and morally sound.
The Israeli Prime Minister’s response came in the wake of South Africa initiating legal proceedings at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) on Friday, accusing Israel of committing “genocidal” acts in Gaza. Netanyahu retorted, “No, South Africa, it is not we who have come to perpetrate genocide; it is Hamas. It would murder all of us if it could. In contrast, the IDF (Israeli army) is acting as morally as possible.”
Israel launched a relentless military campaign against Hamas in response to an unprecedented attack on southern Israel by Palestinian militants on October 7. The attack resulted in approximately 1,140 casualties, mostly civilians, according to an AFP tally based on Israeli figures.
Netanyahu emphasized that the ongoing Gaza offensive aimed at countering Hamas has prioritized moral conduct. However, the conflict has led to a tragic toll, with more than 21,800 casualties reported, predominantly women and children, according to the health ministry in Hamas-ruled Gaza.
As tensions persist, Netanyahu’s strong defense underscores the deeply entrenched positions in the Israel-Palestine conflict, raising concerns about the humanitarian impact on civilians caught in the crossfire.