A court in The Hague has ordered the Dutch government to stop all transfers of parts for the F-35 aircraft in use in Israel from warehouses of the American army in the country. This decision comes after human rights organizations in the Netherlands filed an appeal against the Dutch government’s decision to approve the export, citing concerns about human rights violations and war crimes.
The ruling is based on international treaties that the Netherlands is a signatory to, which require the country to prohibit the export of weapons if there is a significant fear of violations of international law. The court also stated that the government’s decision not to intervene in the parts export agreement signed in 2016 is a violation of the country’s obligations according to international treaties.
The immediate consequences of this court order are not yet clear, as Lockheed Martin, manufacturer of spare parts for F-35 fighter jet, may be able to supply them from other bases located in Europe. This case has been ongoing for several months, with initially approval given by Dutch government but it was met with criticism from human rights organizations.
The organizations that filed this appeal include Oxfam International, PAX organization and Rights Forum. The court’s ruling comes after a local court initially rejected this request but an appeal filed two weeks ago was accepted. This decision has significant implications on international diplomatic relations and arms sales as well as raising important ethical and legal questions about arms sales and human rights violations in conflict zones.