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World Court rejects Nicaragua’s bid to halt Germany’s military exports to Israel – UPI.com

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International Court of Justice on Tuesday ruled against acting against Germany in a case brought before the tribunal by Nicaragua. File Photo by International justice of Court/UPI | License Photo

May 1 (UPI) — The World Court on Tuesday handed Germany a partial victory, rejecting an effort by Nicaragua to halt military exports from the European nation to Israel, though it would not throw out the case entirely.

Nicaragua in mid-March initiated the proceedings against Germany on accusations that it was aiding Israel’s alleged genocide of Palestinians and was seeking the International Court of Justice in the Hague to order Berlin to suspend its military and other assistance to Israel as well as resume funding the United Nations relief agency for Palestinian refugees.

Arguments were heard over two days earlier this month, with the 16-judge panel in The Hague ruling 15-1 Tuesday against Nicaragua’s request.

The court said in its ruling that “the circumstances, as they now present themselves to the court, are not such as to require the exercise of its power.”

Nicaragua accused Germany of violating its obligations under international law over its arming of Israel, pointing to its roughly $354 million in arms and other military equipment deals it made with the Middle Eastern country last year.

Germany retorted during the hearings that it is guided by international humanitarian law and that Nicaragua has “grossly” distorted the purpose and quantity of its military exports to Israel, stating that they were “defensive in nature.”

The court agreed with Berlin, noting in its ruling that Germany has only granted four licenses for so-called war weapons to Israel since the war between Israel and Hamas began on Oct. 7, with three of them being for training ammunition and propellant charges for test purposes. Other requests of Germany from Israel have either not been considered or on hold, with 98% of other licenses granted since the war began being for “other military equipment” and not weapons of war.

“Germany’s framework governing exports of military equipment appears robust, and Nicaragua has not shown that Germany’s conduct will give rise to any real and imminent risk of irreparable prejudice before the court gives its final decision,” Judge Yuji Iwasawa said in a separate opinion on Tuesday.

Concerning payments to UNRWA, the court found that funding the organization is voluntary, that Germany had no new payments due in the weeks following its Jan. 27 announcement to suspend funding and that Berlin has supported other initiations to aid Palestinians.

Germany’s foreign ministry said it welcomes the court’s decision.

“No one is above the law. This guides our foreign policy actions every day,” it said in a statement. “Germany is not a party to the conflict in the Middle East — on the contrary: we are working day and night for a two-state solution as a foundation for a just peace for Israelis and Palestinians.”

The judges, however, also ruled that it cannot agree with Germany’s request to remove the case from the court’s docket, meaning hearings will continue on allegations of Germany being complicit in Israel’s genocide — accusations that Berlin has rejected.

In the ruling, court president Nawaf Salam pointed to another of its cases, one brought against Israel by South Africa, in which the judges ruled late January for the Middle Eastern country to end atrocities in Gaza, though it stopped short of calling for its military campaign to end.

Salam said the court “remains deeply concerned about the catastrophic living conditions of the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip.”

He also said the ruling states that all parties are under to obligation to uphold the Geneva Conventions laws of war.

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