Date: October 29, 2023
Time: 13:00 local time
Original Language: Arabic
The International Commission (Hashd) Israeli Occupation Lies and Peddles Baseless Justifications to Justify the Killing of Children, Women, and the Annihilation of Entire Families
On a daily basis, deliberate Israeli targeting and shelling of homes above the heads of their residents continue. Since the early hours of Monday, October 30, 2023, until this moment, the ambulance and emergency teams have scarcely finished retrieving the bodies and remains of children and women from a family whose home was targeted above their heads when they start once again to retrieve the bodies and remains of other women and children from another family. Israeli policies that rely on the deliberate targeting of the homes of innocent civilians have led to massacres against nearly 900 families, some of which have been completely erased from the civil register. According to the latest statistics from the Palestinian Ministry of Health at 01:00, the ongoing Israeli military bombardment has resulted in the deaths of 8,420 citizens, including 3,510 children, 2,241 women, and 21,000 injuries.
As usual, the Israeli occupying forces have attempted to provide unrealistic justifications for their military behavior towards civilians and their property. At one point, they accuse Palestinian resistance of using densely populated areas for their military operations, which is not true and contradicts the reality. Moreover, it constitutes a clear violation of international legal principles that govern rules of armed conflict. Once again, they claim to have killed Palestinian fighters, which is refuted and contradicted by on-ground facts, as nearly 70% of the casualties from the Israeli aggression in Gaza are children and women. Moreover, 40% of the injured and martyrs are children. Complete massacres were committed against 900 families, with most of their members killed after their homes were bombed without prior warning. Even if the Israeli forces claim to have targeted houses housing combatants, this is a false pretense aimed at justifying the crimes of genocide against civilians, especially children and women. In all the targeted homes, dozens of family members have been killed, with 70% of the casualties being children, women, and the elderly.
International humanitarian law criminalizes killing outside the law and prohibits targeting those who are not in the battlefield, as it is considered a war crime. In this case, the resistance members enjoy the status of protected civilians under international law. Additionally, hundreds of residential towers, over 200,000 housing units, and various civilian facilities, including hospitals, mosques, schools, churches, media and commercial offices, government and private institutions, road networks, water and sewage systems, agricultural lands, water wells, bakeries, and power supplies have been destroyed, exacerbating the catastrophic humanitarian situation of the Gaza population amid the absence of a minimum response to their humanitarian needs.
Israeli crimes did not stop there. They deliberately targeted towers and residential buildings, especially those located in the center of densely populated areas in Gaza’s governorates, which house offices of international and local news agencies. Furthermore, they targeted journalists, resulting in killing and injuring them and partially cutting off communications in an attempt to silence the press and obscure the facts, as well as to terrorize civilians.
No rational observer can believe the Israeli baseless justifications. Israeli criminal policies have contributed, according to United Nations estimates, to the forced displacement of around 1,600,000 civilians who fear for their lives due to repeated Israeli targeting of residential areas and repeated evacuation requests by the occupation. Even those who fled to the southern areas, Israeli forces continued targeting all areas in the Gaza Strip, particularly by bombing homes above the heads of their residents, resulting in the annihilation of entire families. In addition to targeting infrastructure and services that are indispensable to the population.
This Israeli military operation in Gaza is escalating to an unprecedented level, amidst the worsening catastrophic humanitarian crisis due to the tight siege imposed on Gaza, manifested in the closure of all border crossings, cutting off electricity and water, hindering and preventing the flow of humanitarian aid, medicines, and the necessary fuel to operate hospital generators, ambulance and rescue vehicles, and power stations. All of this threatens a repeat of the world witnessing the same horrific massacres and crimes of genocide, as well as the starvation and thirst of the people of Gaza. This has become a systematic and deliberate policy, while the international community remains unable to stop it or confront Israeli obstinacy by preventing and hindering the entry of humanitarian aid to the crisis to save the lives of Gaza’s population.
The International Commission to Support Palestinians Rights (Hashd) reiterates the Palestinian people’s legitimate right to self-defence, recognized in international law, and the right to resist the occupier by all available means. It emphasizes that the Israeli military doctrine has turned civilians and their property into military targets. It warns of the collapse of health services, the worsening of the humanitarian situation, the spread of diseases and epidemics in Gaza due to the ongoing Israeli aggression and the retaliatory collective sanctions. The threat of expanding these operations, along with choking blockade measures affecting all aspects of life for Palestinian civilians, who are unable to secure basic needs, is evident. Therefore,
Hashd records and demands the following:
- Hashd deplores the continued international and regional conspiracy of silence and helplessness in the face of stopping the heinous crimes of genocide and crimes against humanity committed by the military occupation authorities, including the failure to ensure the flow of humanitarian aid, medical supplies, and fuel shipments needed to operate hospitals and humanitarian services.
- Hashd calls on the states that are parties to the Fourth Geneva Convention to declare a clear and explicit position regarding Israel’s refusal to comply with and implement the Convention in the Palestinian territories, and to work on holding the occupying state accountable for applying the rules of international humanitarian law and protecting civilians.
- Hashd calls on the Palestinian leadership to break the silence and stand alongside its people, implement national consensus resolutions, form a unified national leadership, activate diplomatic, legal, and popular movements to confront Israeli crimes, stop the aggression, strengthen boycott campaigns, impose sanctions, and hold Israeli state and military leaders accountable through the International Criminal Court and the use of universal jurisdiction. Hashd also calls for forming an international alliance to halt the aggression and implement relevant United Nations resolutions on the Palestinian issue.
- Hashd urges freedom-loving people around the world and the international solidarity movement with the Palestinian people, as well as all Arab, regional, and international organizations, to take action on all legal, political, diplomatic, human rights, and popular fronts to ensure the cessation of the aggression on Gaza, protect Palestinian civilians, and support the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people.
The International Commission to Support Palestinians Rights (Hashd)