Lawyers seek to stop sale of F-35 parts from the Netherlands to Israel

Israel could be affected by a recent legal petition filed in the Netherlands courts. Human rights lawyers seek to stop the export of F-35 fighter aircraft parts, which could be used in operations against Gaza.

These organizations argue that the delivery of components for the F-35 would imply the complicity of the Netherlands in possible war crimes if used by Israel in its fight against Hamas.

The goal is for the District Court of The Hague to issue a court order prohibiting the departure of these pieces, currently stored in Woensdrecht. “The State must immediately stop the delivery of F-35 parts to  Israel,” lawyer  Liesbeth Zegveld declared in court.

Dutch government faces legal pressure over exports to Israel

Zegveld, citing government documents, maintains that Dutch customs consulted the government about the continuity of exports after the October 7 assault by Hamas, which sparked the war between Israel and Hamas.

The lawyer argued that the economic interests and diplomatic reputation of the Dutch State appear to prevail over warnings of possible violations of the laws of war.

For his part, the government’s lawyer, Reimer Veldhuis, urged the judge to reject the request. Veldhuis argued that even if rights advocates’ legal arguments were accepted and exports were banned, the US would supply these parts to Israel from elsewhere.

Veldhuis added that Israel has the right to self-defense. “Israel must be able to respond to threats in the region. That must happen, of course, within the framework of international law,”  Veldhuis concluded.