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British-born Israeli ex-government official accused of Gaza war crimes

June 6, 2024 at 9:04 pm

Smoke rises over a destroyed building following the Israeli attacks on Al Bureij Camp in Deir al-Balah, Gaza on June 3, 2024. [Ali Jadallah – Anadolu Agency]

An international rights group has lodged a complaint with the War Crimes Unit of Scotland Yard, alleging grave violations of international law by a British-born former Israeli government official, Anadolu Agency reports.

The International Centre of Justice for Palestinians (ICJP) accused the individual of “abetting, inciting, and conspiring” with the Israeli government to commit grave crimes against Palestinian civilians in Gaza, including the use of starvation as a method of warfare.

The ICJP filed extensive evidence of international crimes punishable under UK legislation. The document highlights the individual’s accessory liability for underlying crimes, which include serious breaches of the Geneva Conventions Act 1957 and the International Criminal Court Act 2001.

The allegations are supported by key principles of the Geneva Conventions and the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC).

The complaint asserts that the individual in question, in their capacity as an ex-government official, played a critical role in supporting and perpetuating a blockade that deprived Gaza of essential supplies like food, water, electricity, fuel and medical aid.

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In addition, the individual is accused of complicity in attacks on local food production, distribution networks, humanitarian aid organisations and medical facilities.

Specific examples of the individual’s actions include a series of statements categorised into three main areas: delegitimising the UN aid agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA), hate speech against Palestinians and Muslims and incitement of unlawful attacks on medical facilities and professionals.

The evidence is bolstered by witness testimonies from 19 doctors, who have worked in Gaza since October 2023, as well as reports from international bodies, including the UN Human Rights Office, Oxfam and Human Rights Watch, which have all documented the use of starvation as a weapon of war.

This is not the first time the Metropolitan Police have been presented with evidence of such crimes. The ICJP submitted extensive documentation in January and May of 2024, demonstrating the applicability of the crimes under UK jurisdiction and legislation.

Israel has continued its brutal offensive on Gaza since the 7 October, 2023, Hamas incursion despite a UN Security Council resolution demanding an immediate ceasefire.

More than 36,650 Palestinians have since been killed in Gaza, the vast majority being women and children, and over 83,300 others injured, according to local health authorities.

Eight months into the Israeli war, vast swathes of Gaza lay in ruins amid a crippling blockade of food, clean water and medicine.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which in its latest ruling has ordered Tel Aviv to immediately halt its operation in the southern city of Rafah, where over a million Palestinians had sought refuge from the war before it was invaded on 6 May.

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