Spain coalition party backs UN genocide case against Israel
The left-wing party in Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez's coalition government on Thursday backed South Africa's genocide case against Israel at the UN's top court, calling it a "necessary step".
South Africa has lodged an urgent appeal at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to force Israel to "immediately suspend" its military operations in Gaza.
On the first of hearings on Thursday at the top UN court, Pretoria accused Israel of breaching the UN Genocide Convention, arguing that even the surprise Hamas attack on October 7 could not justify such alleged actions.
"South Africa's lawsuit against Israel is a necessary step to prevent genocide. It is urgent and necessary for the International Court of Justice to order precautionary measures to achieve a permanent ceasefire," the Sumar party wrote on X, formerly Twitter.
Sumar is the junior partner in Spain's minority coalition government with Sanchez's Socialist party.
The party's leader, Labour Minister Yolanda Diaz, is one of Sanchez's three deputy prime ministers.
In a separate message on X Spain's social rights minister, Pablo Bustinduy who also belongs to Sumar, called South Africa's lawsuit "a historic gesture, brave and necessary".
Israel has dismissed the case as "atrocious" and "preposterous" and accused South Africa of serving as the "legal arm" of Hamas militants.
Hearings will resume on Friday at the ICJ.
Israel's war on Gaza has killed at least 23,469 people, mostly women and children.