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UN says destruction in Gaza amounts to 'grave breach' of Fourth Geneva Convention, war crime

February 8, 2024 at 4:13 pm

A view of destruction in the towns of al-Karameh, al-Sudaniyeh and Al-Tawam where their asphalt roads were destroyed due to bulldozers and Israeli airstrikes after the Israeli army withdrew from parts of Gaza City and North Gaza governorate for the first time since it started its ground offensive on Oct. 27, in Gaza City, Gaza on February 02, 2024. [Khalil Alkahlut – Anadolu Agency]

The UN Human Rights chief said, Thursday, that the destruction of civilian infrastructure in the Gaza Strip by Israel is a violation of a Geneva Convention “and a war crime”, Anadolu Agency reports.

“Extensive destruction of property, not justified by military necessity and carried out unlawfully and wantonly, amounts to a grave breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention, and a war crime,” Volker Turk told reporters.

Last month, the International Court of Justice (ICJ) issued an interim order demanding Israel stop obstructing aid deliveries into Gaza and improves the humanitarian situation in the enclave, following a lawsuit by South Africa accusing Tel Aviv of committing genocide.

Israel has pounded Gaza since a cross-border attack by Palestinian group, Hamas, in October, which Tel Aviv said killed nearly 1,200 people.

However, since then, it has been revealed by Haaretz that helicopters and tanks of the Israeli army had, in fact, killed many of the 1,139 soldiers and civilians claimed by Israel to have been killed by the Palestinian Resistance.

At least 27,840 Palestinians have since been killed and 67,317 others injured in the Israeli onslaught, according to local health authorities.

About 85 per cent of Gazans have been displaced by the Israeli offensive, while all of them are food insecure, according to the UN. Hundreds of thousands of people are living without shelter and ⁠less than half of aid trucks are entering the Territory than before the start of the conflict.

Genocide and more: the varied forms of destruction in Gaza