Amnesty International:
Israel's 'shocking disregard' for Palestinians may be a war crime

Middle East (IP) - Israel has bombed residential homes in Gaza without warning, killing civilians which may amount to war crimes, Amnesty International said.

Iran PressMiddle East: The Israeli has engaged in a pattern of deadly attacks against residential homes in Gaza, carrying out bombing raids without giving the innocent men, women, and children inside any time to escape, the amnesty said Monday.

For over a week, Israeli forces have bombarded the Gaza Strip, a densely populated Palestinian territory controlled by Hamas. Israel has said its strikes are intended to stop indiscriminate rocket fire - itself a war crime - that has killed 10 of its citizens, including two children.

At least 212 Palestinians have been killed, including 61 children and 36 women, according to Gaza health authorities, prompting widespread criticism that the Israeli response has been disproportionate.

Israeli fighter jets bombard Gaza Strip

In one attack, carried out after 1:00 a.m., Israeli airstrikes leveled two residential buildings, killing 30 people.

"There was no warning, so people were inside their home sitting together, and this is a lively, bustling area," a medic, Yousef Yassin, told researchers with Amnesty International.

Another strike, just before midnight, hit a three-story residential building that 20 people called home.

"We eventually found my daughter, a mother of three, with her children, one of whom was a baby, under one of the cement pillars of the house; all of them were dead," Hassan al-Atar, a civil defense officer, told the group.

Saleh Higazi, Amnesty's deputy director for the Middle East and North Africa, said it was "hard to imagine" how bombing such buildings could be considered a proportionate response under international law.

"By carrying out these brazen deadly attacks on family homes without warning Israel has demonstrated a callous disregard for lives of Palestinian civilians who are already suffering the collective punishment of Israel's illegal blockade on Gaza since 2007," Higazi said.

The findings come days after Amnesty warned that Israeli authorities "have an obligation to choose means and methods of attacks that would minimize risks posed to civilians," and amid increasing calls for an end to the fighting.

The US government, at the same time, has agreed to a deal to sell advanced weapons to Israel, The Washington Post reported on Monday.

Health officials in the Gaza Strip also have said that the main coronavirus test laboratory in the Gaza Strip had closed due to the devastation caused by Israeli fighter jets.


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