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South Africa's Lead Attorney John Dugard To Argue ICJ Genocide Case

The lead attorney for South Africa in their Jan. 11 hearing before the International Court of Justice, calling for an expedited ruling for Israel to cease and desist on possible genocidal military actions in Gaza, is John Dugard, Professor Emeritus at Universities of Leiden and the Witwatersrand. He is a former Special Rapporteur on Human Rights in the Occupied Palestinian Territory and the author of the book, Confronting Apartheid: A Personal History of South Africa, Namibia and Palestine. The opening of his April 17 2019 op-ed, “Why Aren’t Europeans Calling Israel an Apartheid State?” reads:

“Apartheid is alive and well and thriving in occupied Palestine. Israel‘s restrictions on freedom of movement in the occupied Palestinian territory are a resurrection of South Africa’s hated pass laws, which criminalized black South Africans without a permit or pass to be in a ‘white’ city. Israel’s policy of forcible population removals and destruction of homes resembles the relocation of black people from areas zoned for exclusive white occupation in apartheid South Africa.

“The Israeli security forces engage in torture and brutality exceeding the worst practices of the South African security apparatus. And the humiliation of black people that was a feature of apartheid in South Africa is replicated in occupied Palestine. Racist rhetoric in the Israeli public debate offends even those familiar with the language of apartheid South Africa. The crude racist advertising that characterized campaigning in Israel’s recent elections was unknown in South Africa. In international law, apartheid is a state-sanctioned regime of institutionalized and legalized racial discrimination and oppression by one hegemonic racial group against another.

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