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Conference of Presidents Condemns ICJ Decision Against Israel

New York, NY… Harriet P. Schleifer, Chair, and William C. Daroff, CEO, of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, issued the following statement: 

“The Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations is outraged by the International Court of Justice’s (ICJ) demand that Israel halt its ongoing operation to free over 100 hostages and to degrade Hamas activity in Rafah. 

“This ruling is a victory for terrorists everywhere and represents an infringement on Israel’s sovereignty and right of self-defense. As noted by former Israeli Supreme Court Judge Aharon Barak, who was a dissenting vote in the case: ‘the issuance of ‘an order that orders one side to stop fighting, while the other is free to continue fighting’ is ludicrous and impossible.’ We agree.

“The ICJ exceeded the scope of its authority and undermined its legitimacy with this politically motivated ruling, which sends the message that terrorists can use civilians as human shields, contrary to international law. 

“The court’s ruling is also evidently based on a factually incorrect view of international law and the actual situation on the ground in Rafah. As John Spencer, chair of urban warfare studies at West Point, reflected, ‘Israel has done more to prevent civilian casualties in Gaza than any military in history.’ To alleviate risks to civilians, Israel has facilitated the evacuation of nearly one million people from Rafah while conducting targeted operations in phases along the Philadelphi Corridor and along the Egyptian border. Additionally, Israel and the United States are facilitating a surge in humanitarian aid by land and now sea. 

“The ICJ’s further demand that Israel reopen the Rafah Border Crossing is also puzzling, as Egypt thus far refuses to resume aid shipments. 

“This act of lawfare against an American ally is a threat to American national security, while also incentivizing terrorists and autocrats around the world. Israel has the right – and the responsibility – to continue its operation to bring captive American and Israeli citizens home and to eliminate the Hamas terrorist army’s capabilities in Gaza.

“No other country would be expected to abandon its people to terrorists. While this ruling is outrageous, it is not surprising that yet another international body delegitimizes itself by holding the Jewish State to a different standard than any other country in the world.

“We urge President Biden to veto any attempts to enforce this miscarriage of justice at the UN Security Council.”


The Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations is the recognized central coordinating body representing 50 diverse national Jewish organizations on issues of national and international concern.

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