World Jewish Congress President Ronald S. Lauder Calls on International Community to take on Hamas Following ICJ Ruling

NEW YORK — Ronald S.
Lauder, President of the World Jewish Congress, issued the following statement
in response to the International Court of Justice’s (ICJ) latest ruling
regarding South Africa’s case against Israel, and the court’s order that Israel
halts operations in Rafah:

“We reiterate our
firm belief that Israel, like any sovereign nation, must retain the right to
protect its citizens against acts of terror. Today’s decision by the ICJ will
only prolong Hamas’s deadly reign over the people of Gaza.

“Hamas is solely
responsible for this conflict and stands in the way of a future where Israelis
and Palestinians live side-by-side as neighbors. Since the events of October
7th, the group has used civilians as human shields—a blatant violation of
international law which must be unequivocally condemned—while continuing to
siphon away humanitarian aid from those who need it most.

“The situation in
Rafah, where Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar is reportedly hiding with hostages,
underscores Israel’s need to act.

“We urge the
international community to recognize Israel’s right to self-defense and to join
us in calling for the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages held
by Hamas. It is imperative that global efforts focus on holding this terror
organization accountable for the atrocities it has committed and ensuring the
safety and security of all innocent lives. The lack of focus on this issue
by global institutions to this point is deafening.”

About the World Jewish Congress

The World Jewish Congress (WJC) is the international organization representing Jewish communities in 100 countries to governments, parliaments and international organizations.

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