Pretoria filed a complaint against Israel before the International Court of Justice, accusing it that its attack on Gaza amounted to a violation of the United Nations Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.

The court has not yet decided on the merits of the case, but on January 26 it ordered Israel to do everything in its power to prevent acts of genocide during its military offensive as well as to allow humanitarian aid to enter.

On Tuesday, South Africa submitted a petition to the International Court of Justice, saying that there had been a “major development” since the court’s decision in January, which was the announced attack on Rafah.

In its response, published on the International Court of Justice's website late Thursday, Israel said, "South Africa's unjustified claims make clear that its request is not motivated by any change in circumstances, and has no basis in fact or law."

It considered that Pretoria was seeking "to manipulate the court to protect Hamas, a long-time ally of South Africa, which is a global terrorist organization."

Israel stressed that it is "steadfast" in its commitment to international law, including the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide during the current conflict.

The war broke out following a Hamas attack on southern Israel on October 7, which left more than 1,160 dead, the majority of them civilians, according to a census conducted by Agence France-Presse based on official Israeli data.

In response to the attack, Israel launched an attack that has so far killed 28,663 people in Gaza, the vast majority of them civilians, women and minors, according to the Gaza Strip’s Ministry of Health.

Israel launched bloodier attacks on the southern Gaza Strip on Thursday after Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu insisted on moving forward with a “strong” operation in the city of Rafah, crowded with displaced people, to achieve “complete victory.”

On the other hand, ongoing efforts in Cairo to secure a ceasefire have entered their third day, as negotiators from the United States, Qatar and Egypt attempt to broker an agreement to stop the fighting and release hostages held by Hamas.