Israel Committed War Crimes in Gaza - HRW Watchdog

Published July 28th, 2021 - 10:00 GMT
Human Rights Watch claims that Israel committed war crimes while fighting with Hamas
Palestinians take part in a rally denouncing the blockade of the Gaza Strip, east of Gaza City by the border with Israel, on July 18, 2021. Israel has maintained a blockade on Gaza since 2007, the year the Palestinian Hamas movement took power in the strip. SAID KHATIB / AFP

Human Rights Watch report published on Tuesday reveals Israel likely committed war crimes during 11 days attacks with Hamas in May in Gaza.

Egypt helped negotiate a cease-fire to end the fighting after an Israeli bombing campaign killed more than 230 people. At least 12 people in Israel were killed by retaliatory Hamas rocket fire.

Human Rights Watch said Tuesday that three Israeli strikes, which killed 62 Palestinian civilians, amount to war crimes because there were no military targets in the vicinity.

"Israeli forces carried out attacks in Gaza in May that devastated entire families without any apparent military target nearby," Gerry Simpson, associate crisis and conflict director at Human Rights Watch, said in a statement

"Israeli authorities' consistent unwillingness to seriously investigate alleged war crimes, as well as Palestinian forces' rocket attacks toward Israeli population centers, underscores the importance of the International Criminal Court's inquiry."

Human Rights Watch called on the prosecutor for the International Criminal Court to investigate those responsible for the civilian deaths.

"The prosecutor's office should include in its Palestine investigation Israeli attacks in Gaza that resulted in apparently unlawful civilian casualties, as well as Palestinian rocket attacks that struck population centers in Israel," it said.

The Gaza Health Ministry blamed Israeli forces for almost 2,000 Palestinian injuries during the fighting, including 600 children. Israel said the Palestinian attacks injured "several hundred" people.

The HRW report also noted that 4,400 Palestinian rockets fired into Israeli-populated centers similarly violated a prohibition against deliberate or indiscriminate attacks against civilians.

The watchdog said it will publish separate report on Palestinian fighting.

This article has been adapted from its original source.

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