The Dutch Supreme Court has ruled that two ex-servicemen, including former Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz, are exempt from civil prosecution in the Netherlands in the case of the death of six Palestinians in an airstrike.
The decision was made in December 2021 by the Hague Court of Appeals, with retired military politician Gantz and former Air Force Commander Amir Eshel as senior Israeli officials conducting government policy “regardless of the nature and extent of the behavior imputed against them” in the Netherlands. upheld his decision that he could not be held liable in a civil action.
This means that the Dutch Supreme Court “exempted the Israeli military from prosecution in the Netherlands under civil action and dismissed the claim for compensation”.
Ismail Ziada, a Dutch citizen of Palestinian origin, filed a war crimes compensation lawsuit against former Israeli Chief of Staff Benny Gantz on the grounds that he was responsible for the death of his family.
Ziada had lost her mother, three siblings, aunt and nephew in the Burayj Refugee Camp as a result of Israel’s airstrikes on Gaza on July 20, 2014.
In her application, Ziada had sought damages against Gantz under the ‘Dutch rules of universal jurisdiction’ that allow countries to prosecute serious crimes committed elsewhere.
The lawyers of Ziada, who is of Palestinian origin, argued that these two senior Israeli soldiers do not have immunity because their actions constitute war crimes.
However, since it is the highest judicial authority, there is no other appeal against the Dutch Supreme Court’s decision.
According to UN figures, approximately 2,200 Palestinians, including 1,500 civilians, were killed in these conflicts.
According to Israeli military and health officials, 67 Israeli soldiers and 6 civilians lost their lives.