Palestinian Territory – Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor:  As talks resume to reach a truce to end Israel’s war on the Gaza Strip, ongoing since 7 October 2023, the Israeli military appears to be using its policy of forced displacement and starvation as a tool of political pressure and blackmail.

Israel is expanding its targeting of displacement centers and surrounding areas and continuing to carry out mass killing operations against civilians and displaced people, all while preventing the displaced from returning to their homes, starving them, denying them access to basic supplies that are necessary for survival, and blocking the entry of humanitarian aid. These acts demonstrate an insistence on committing genocide against the Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip.

Israeli aircraft fired multiple missiles yesterday evening (Tuesday 9 July at around 6:55 p.m.), at a group of people gathered at the gate of Al-AwdaSchool in Abasan Al-Kabira, east of the city of Khan Yunis in the southern Gaza Strip. Abasan Al-Kabira houses thousands of internally displaced people. About 32 people were killed and 50 injured in the attack on the school, the majority of whom were women and children. Some of the victims’ bodies were blown into pieces.

According to preliminary data gathered from the examination of bomb fragments used in the attack, American bombs—which have been used innumerous mass killing operations against Gaza Strip civilians—were used in the bombing.

The Israeli army’s ongoing atrocities in the Strip, including repeatedly targeting UN-flagged shelter centres and killing those inside, while the international community remains almost silent, are primarily committed with the intent to eradicate Palestinians, with civilians being used as a tool of political pressure and blackmail. There is no justification for these crimes.

Since there has been talk of resumed negotiations for a ceasefire agreement, Israel has ramped up its attacks on the Gaza Strip. This suggests that Israel is applying pressure by increasing its targeting, starvation, and murder of civilians, as well as using them as a political tool for blackmail without respect for international law.

Israel has pursued, and continues to pursue, a systematic policy of targeting civilians in the Gaza Strip, who are protected by international humanitarian law. This targeting includes killing; starvation; arrest; torture; forced disappearance; sexual assault and rape; denial of medical treatment and humanitarian aid; forced displacement; bombing shelter centers over the heads of displaced people; targeting areas designated as humanitarian zones; and denying displaced Palestinians any stability or shelter, even if that shelter is only temporary.

Based on the aforementioned, all nations are required to fulfil their international obligations by enacting strong sanctions against Israel and severing all other types of political, financial, and military support and cooperation. This includes immediately halting arms transfers to Israel, including export permits and military aid; otherwise, these nations will be held accountable for the crimes that have been committed in the Gaza Strip, including genocide.

Additionally, the International Criminal Court ought to keep looking into any and all crimes committed by Israel in the Gaza Strip; broaden its investigation into criminal responsibility, in order to hold all perpetrators accountable; issue arrest warrants for those responsible; and acknowledge and address Israel’s crimes in the Strip, as they are international crimes that fall under the purview of the International Criminal Court and are clearly crimes of genocide.

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