Ismail Ziada is a Palestinian living in The Hague, the city of international law and the site of a historic legal case against Israel for genocide, brought by South Africa in the International Court of Justice. Ismail is no stranger to court cases. He filed a lawsuit against Israeli military leaders including Benny Gantz after his family home in Gaza’s Bureij camp was destroyed by an Israeli airstrike in 2014. It was a direct hit, and it killed his mother, three brothers, sister-in-law and 12-year-old nephew.
It is with this experience that Ismail follows closely the two-day hearing against Israel in The Hague. And while he is under no illusions that international law can bring justice for Palestinians, he thinks cases like this and his own are absolutely necessary. ‘It’s a fight that you have to fight. It’s not about winning or losing, it’s about not giving up,” he tells the Middle East Monitor. “It’s an act of resistance.”