The Hague, Feb 12 (EFE).- A Dutch court on Monday ordered the government to stop delivering parts of F-35 fighter jets to Israel within seven days.
The ruling comes in response to the appeal filed by three NGOs who sought a ban on the export, citing they are “used by Israel in the bombing of Gaza.”
The appeals court ruled in favor of the NGOs and said, “It is undeniable that there is a clear risk the exported F-35 parts are used in serious violations of international humanitarian law.”
Israel’s military offensive in Gaza, in retaliation to the brutal Hamas attack on Oct. 7, has killed over 28,100 Palestinians, injured over 67,900 and displaced over 80 percent of the population.
In October, Israel placed an order for the US-owned F-35 parts which are stored in a warehouse in the Netherlands and exported to several countries, including Israel, as per existing trade agreements.
“We hope that this verdict can strengthen international law, also in other countries. So that the civilians in Gaza are also protected by international law,” Michiel Servaes, director of Oxfam Novib, said in a statement.
The Dutch NGOs Oxfam Novib, PAX and The Rights Forum, supported by other groups and more than 1,000 people in a crowdfunding campaign, had filed a lawsuit against the Netherlands government.
“It is a shame that this legal action was necessary and it is unfortunate that it took four months to come to this conclusion. The judge had ruled that the minister was indeed obliged to re-examine the arms export license and that the minister had done that incorrectly,” Servaes said.
In December, a lower court sided with the government and said the Netherlands had no obligation to stop deliveries.
The Appeal court overturned the earlier ruling on Monday and ordered the state to “cease all actual export and transit of F-35 parts with final destination Israel within seven days.”
Hamas’ attack on southern Israel on Oct. 7 killed over 1,200 people and over 250 were taken hostage.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has urged military pressure on Gaza despite the global condemnation of the country’s offensive on the besieged enclave.
The ruling coincides with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte’s official trip to Israel and Palestine.
More humanitarian aid to Gaza, the release of all the hostages, and a reduction in Israeli military operations in the enclave is the priority at the moment, Rutte said on Monday.
In January, the International Court of Justice issued precautionary measures asking Israel to take “immediate and effective” steps to prevent genocide in Gaza although it did not demand a “ceasefire” as South Africa had requested when it brought the case. EFE