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Palestinian rights group calls for ICC to take issue of Israel crimes seriously

April 12, 2023 at 9:32 am

People carry the body of 15-year-old Palestinian Mohammed Bilhan during his funeral after he was killed by Israeli forces during the raid at Aqabat Jaber camp in Jericho, West Bank on April 10, 2023 [Issam Rimawi/Anadolu Agency]

The Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) yesterday called for the ICC Prosecutor to carry out a “serious” investigation into Israeli crimes against Palestinians.

This came one day after the Israeli occupation forces shot dead Palestinian minor Mohammad Awadat, 17, in the refugee camp of Aqabat Jabr in the occupied West Bank city of Jericho.

In a statement, the PCHR said: “The crime committed by the Israeli occupation in which a Palestinian child was killed and three others were wounded in Jericho came as part of the Israeli war crimes and crimes resulting in excessive use of force.”

ICC ruling brings hope for Palestine, dismay for Israel - Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

ICC ruling brings hope for Palestine, dismay for Israel – Cartoon [Sabaaneh/MiddleEastMonitor]

Defence for Children International –Palestine (DCIP) said in a report: “Israeli forces entered Aqbat Jabr refugee camp around 9:40 am that morning, and while withdrawing from the camp, fired live ammunition indiscriminately, striking Mohammad in his head, chest, abdomen and pelvis.”

It added: “A Palestinian Red Crescent Society ambulance transferred Mohammad to Jericho government hospital, where he was pronounced dead at around 11:30 am.”

Ayed Abu Eqtaish, accountability programme director at DCIP, said: “Systemic impunity creates an ultra permissive context where Israeli forces know no bounds and routinely shoot to kill Palestinian children in circumstances where there is no imminent threat to life.”

He added: “Unlawful killings of Palestinian children have become the norm as Israeli forces become increasingly empowered to use intentional lethal force in situations that are not justified. In short, these are war crimes with no consequence.”

The PCHR called for the international community to immediately move and stop the Israeli occupation crimes and stop its policy of double-standards when dealing with Israeli crimes.

Awadat is the 18th Palestinian child killed by Israeli forces in 2023, according to DCIP.

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