The Dutch government does not have to stop supplying fighter jet parts to Israel, The Hague district court said on Friday.
Last month, a trio of NGOs filed a suit to block the Netherlands from exporting F-35 parts from a warehouse on Woensdrecht Air Base, arguing doing so violates international law.
“The current (war) situation in Gaza is very complex and that much is still unclear,” the court wrote, rejecting the complaint from Amnesty International, Oxfam Novib and The Rights Forum.
The NRC reported in October that the foreign ministry was aware that there were serious concerns over Israel’s attacks on Gaza but did not stop a shipment of the aircraft parts. The plane is used both for surveillance and for carrying out bombings.
The Dutch granted a permit in 2016 to send plane parts, which are owned by the United States, to Israel. Following the October 7th attacks, the military requested more and the customs office asked the government if it wanted to review the permit.
The state declined. “On the basis of current information on the deployment of the Israeli F-35, it cannot be established that the F-35 is involved in serious violations of the humanitarian law of war,” the caretaker government wrote in a briefing to parliament.
Michiel Servaes, the director of Oxfam Novib, said he was “very disappointed” in the outcome and that his organisation planned to appeal. “There are also many people in Gaza, in Palestine itself, who have followed this closely. I’m dreading having to tell them,” he told reporters at a press conference after the verdict was announced.
The Dutch have blocked the export of military equipment to Israel in the past. According to the NRC, between 2004 and 2020, the Netherlands refused to issue a permit for military goods to the country 29 times.
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