Photo: Adrian Wyld The Canadian Press According to MP Salma Zahid, seen here arriving at the Liberal caucus meeting on Friday, Canada must comply with all court orders.
The Canadian Press in Ottawa
Liberal MPs are divided on how Canada should respond to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ruling on whether Israel is committing genocide in the Gaza Strip.
The United Nations' highest court decided Friday to continue examining the case, while asking Israel to try to limit deaths and damage in its military offensive.
South Africa had filed the complaint at the ICJ, demanding a ceasefire, but judges instead ordered six interim measures on Friday to protect Palestinians in Gaza.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau made no comment Friday morning when reporters asked him for his reaction to his arrival at the Liberal caucus meeting in Parliament.
- ICJ calls on Israel to “prevent and punish” incitement to “genocide” in Gaza
- Ottawa awaits “irrefutable evidence” before speaking of genocide in Gaza
Liberal MP Salma Zahid said she would read the ICJ's interim ruling first, but said Canada must comply with all court orders and bring other countries together to help respond to the humanitarian situation in Gaza.
His colleague Anthony Housefather calls the appeal “baseless and insulting”, and believes that the international tribunal sets a very low bar for deciding whether there is a possible case of genocide.
“Israel respects international law and Israel will continue to respect it,” he argued.
The debate has divided the Liberal caucus, and Mr. Trudeau has refused calls from Jewish and Muslim groups in Canada to take a clear position, as have other leaders around the world.
The Prime Minister has already indicated that Canada does not necessarily agree with the premise of South Africa's argument, but he has not clarified whether he rejects the request or whether Canada would respect the decision of the international tribunal.
South African and Palestinian diplomats in Canada are scheduled to hold a press conference later Friday.