Palestine Justice Campaign to the Supreme Court

The Case in Short
 
On July 20th, 2014 the Ziada family home in the Bureij refugee camp in Gaza was bombed by Israeli military forces. It was a targeted attack that reduced the three storey building instantly to rubble and left everyone inside it fatally wounded. Amongst the dead lay Ismail Ziada’s mother, three brothers, his sister-in-law, a 12-year-old nephew and a visiting friend. In search of justice and accountability, Ismail Ziada, who holds Dutch nationality, brought Israeli military officials responsible for the attack, Benny Gantz and Amir Eshel before courts in The Netherlands.
 
The case was initially heard before The District Court of The Hague in September 2019 and subsequently before the Appeals Court of The Hague in September 2021. In both the first instance judgement and the appeal, the Court ruled that Gantz and Eshel were immune from prosecution because the act of bombing the Ziada family home was an official act of the state of Israel, meaning they were entitled to immunity. The initial case and the appeal were supported by our original crowdfunder "Palestine Justice Campaign". Now, Ismail Ziada is taking Gantz and Eshel to the Dutch Supreme Court. 
 
To support this next step in the case, this new crowdfunder has been set up to specially support the Ziada family's fight for justice before the Supreme Court. This case is not for personal gain and if any compensation is received, it will be dedicated to a special fund to be established for Palestinian war crime victims in general and children in particular.
 
We thank all of the friends and supporters of the case so far. Every donation large or small helps the Ziada family struggle for justice for the Palestinian people. Please contribute what you can and encourage others to do the same.
 
Below you can find out more about the case background and previous judgements by Dutch courts.

To watch a documentary on the case click here 
To read more on the legal aspects of the case click here 



Case Background
 
On July 20th, 2014 the Ziada family home in the Bureij refugee camp in Gaza was bombed by Israeli military forces. It was a targeted attack that reduced the three storey building instantly to rubble and left everyone inside it fatally wounded. Amongst the dead lay Ismail Ziada’s mother, three brothers, his sister-in-law, a 12-year-old nephew and a visiting friend.
 
 
 
Saad Ziada standing in the ruins of the family home where six family members were killed
 
Over 2,000 Palestinians were killed by the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) during “Operation Protective Edge”. The vast majority were non-combatants and over a quarter of all people killed in the operation were children under eighteen years of age.
 
In the fall of that same year Ismail Ziada, a Dutch citizen resident in the Netherlands, contacted Liesbeth Zegveld, a prominent lawyer, specializing in support for victims of war crimes and human rights violations. Ziada was committed to holding those responsible for the killing of his family accountable.
 
The original suggestion of initiating a criminal case was soon put to one side as previous experience indicated that it was highly unlikely that the public prosecutor would initiate criminal proceedings. However, Zegveld pointed out that the Netherlands upholds a system of universal jurisdiction in civil proceedings for Dutch citizens who are unable to gain access to justice elsewhere.
 
While the Ziada writ was focused on the fact that the bombing of the family home was illegal and a war crime according to international law, the response of the defendants focused exclusively on their alleged right to immunity and the Dutch court’s alleged lack of jurisdiction based on the argument that Ismail Ziada would have access to justice in Israel.
 
 
The case so far
 
The first step in the quest for justice was the court hearing in the Hague in September 2019. The panel of judges made a public pronouncement on January 29th, 2020. In this first instance, the court found that it was not competent to hear the case because of the diplomatic immunity offered to Gantz and Eshel as agents of the Israeli state. On December 7th, 2021, the Appeals Court of The Hague upheld the lower court decision that Gantz and Eschel were immune from prosecution because the bombing of the Ziada family home was an official act of the Israeli state. Now, as part of the next step in the case, Ismail Ziada is challenging the Appeal Court's decision to extend immunity to Gantz and Eshel before the Supreme Court of The Netherlands. This is the next step in the fight for justice and will be the last domestic avenue the Ziada family must exhaust before being able to appeal before the European Court of Human Rights if the Appeal Court decision is upheld by the Supreme Court. 
 
More information on the case filings and documents can be found here.
 
Every donation large or small helps the Ziada family struggle for justice for the Palestinian people. Please contribute what you can and encourage others to do the same. All money donated will be transferred to the Nuhanovic Foundation, a registered non-profit charity that assists war victims who seek access to justice to obtain a remedy in the form of reparation, restitution or compensation. 100% of the funds raised will go towards the legal fees incurred in the litigation of the Supreme Court case.
 
This GoFundMe page has been established by the Palestine Justice Campaign which is an international single-issue group of concerned citizens, trade unionists and human rights workers who volunteer to assist the Ziada family in their pursuit for justice. If you prefer to contribute directly to the bank account which is managed by the Nuhanovic Foundation please contact us via the GoFundMe page.
  • EDWARD FREEDMAN 
    • €10 
    • 4 mos
  • Fagforbundet Innlandet 
    • €2,061 
    • 5 mos
  • France Anne Blanmailland 
    • €20 
    • 5 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • €10 
    • 5 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • €20 
    • 5 mos
See all

Fundraising team: Palestine Justice Campaign (3)

Sam Gaunt 
Organizer
The Hague
Nuhanovic Foundation 
Beneficiary
Ismail Ziada 
Team member