THE HAGUE - The Netherlands must stop delivering parts for F-35 fighter jets used by Israel in the Gaza Strip, after a Dutch court Monday upheld an appeal by human rights organisations.

The groups had argued that supplying the parts contributed to alleged violations of international law by Israel in its war on the besieged Strip.

"The court orders the State to cease all actual export and transit of F-35 parts with final destination Israel within seven days after service of this judgement," said the ruling.

The US-owned F-35 parts are stored at a warehouse in the Netherlands and then shipped to several partners, including Israel, via existing export agreements.

"In doing so, the Netherlands is contributing to serious violations of humanitarian law of war in Gaza," the rights groups said.

In December, the district court in The Hague had said that supplying the parts was primarily a political decision that judges should not interfere with.

"The considerations that the minister makes are to a large extent of a political and policy nature and judges should leave the minister a large amount of freedom," the court ruled at the time.

Dutch authorities had said it was not clear whether they even had the power to intervene in the deliveries, part of a US-run operation that supplies parts to all F-35 partners.

Government lawyers also argued that if the Dutch did not supply the parts from the warehouse based in the Netherlands, Israel could easily procure them elsewhere.

Israel began its relentless onslaught on the Gaza Strip on 7 October, killing at least 28,340 people as of Monday, mostly women and children.

International law experts have told AFP that human rights violations were likely being carried out by Israel in its war on the strip.

The International Court of Justice in The Hague, which rules on disputes between states, has said Israel must do everything possible to prevent genocidal acts in Gaza.

That ruling "strengthens our confidence in a positive ruling in our case", said PAX Netherlands, one of the rights groups involved in the appeal.